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by Alec Farmer

You finally reach the peak, take out your camera and take a few snaps that you think will let you remember the moment forever But you get home and they totally fail to capture that awesome moment. We've all been there at one point. 

Although taking awesome photographs is definitely a skill that is practiced and refined, there are some basic steps you can take to get there quicker. Blogger and graphic designer James Grieg gives us 10 solid tips on how to take great Instagram photographs:

1. Follow the people who take great photos.

Their talent will rub off on you. You'll get ideas for how you could take your own shots. Here are a few of my favourite photographers on Instagram to get you started:

Ali Horne

Richard Gatson

Alex Ingle

Natalie Whitehill

2. Unfollow most of the people you've already followed who are taking boring photos.

This probably means unfollowing a few of your 'friends'. Don't be worried about offending people. (I once got a passive-aggressive tweet from someone thanking me for unfollowing them on Twitter.) The social obligation to keep following people you know is kind of ridiculous in the virtual world if you think about it. You can still talk to them in real life. It might even be more fun to do so. 

3. Find the light.

Use natural light to your advantage. Don't shoot indoors at night unless you really have to. If you're shooting an object, find a plain background. Go out early in the morning or right at the end of the day when the sun is low in the sky. It makes things look good. 

 4. Get perspective.

Take your shots from unusual perspectives. Spend a day looking straight up at the sky, into trees, up at the rooftops. Or do the exact opposite. I don't know. Just mix it up a bit.

 5. Capture motion.

The world isn't static. Your photographs shouldn't be either. 

6. Be unusual. 

Choose an unusual subject matter, go to unusual places or hang out with unusual people.

7. "Discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes"

Luckily you can find the unusual in places you've visited a thousand times before. You just have to look. 

8. Forge your own style. 

How can you do things differently? What subject matter can you shoot which is unique to you? (Hint: it's probably not latte art or your feet).

9. Practice makes perfect.

Which means you should bring a camera absolutely everywhere. 

9. Last but not least, have fun!

Experiment. Make mistakes. Don't follow long lists of instructions on how to take photos by people you don't know.

And if you feel ready, join our photography competition and have a chance to win a  Bannoch Camera Bag worth over £300. 

Alec Farmer
Alec Farmer

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