28 March 2015

Blogging Conundrums

Blogging Conundrums
As somebody who writes about beauty so often I have over the last three years come across various little issues that I have to work around; I'm sure you have too. For the record this is by no means a post complaining, in fact it's quite the contrary as I thought I'd pop together a light hearted post where I share some of the various blogger conundrums that I have come across in that time. Feel free to leave yours in the comments below; I'll enjoy reading them when I get home from work.

To swatch or not? -  I've read a lot of opinions in the time that I have being blogging in regards to beauty swatches, some really positive and some really quite negative. When I started off writing A Little Boat Sailing I always included swatches however over time I developed more of an interest in the presentation of my blog and found that I rarely felt happy with swatch pictures. Generally speaking that's why there are not many on my blog these days, it's not because I don't like them, it's purely because I'm still yet to find a way that I'm happy to portray them. One final thought is that I couldn't care less whether someone includes swatches in a post or not; it's their blog at the end of the day. It's great to see the product on but let's face it the product will probably look different on everybody anyway so whether you post swatches on your arm, hand, finger tips or forehead or you decide to not to include them at all, who would I be to judge? 

Photograph before use! - Hands up who is guilty here? I know this may seem silly to some but if I have a new product then nine times out of ten I will wait until I have photographed it for a future review before I actually use it. Some people may not be bothered about this fact and do you know what that's completely cool, however for me personally it's just something I like to do. 

Grammar errors at 2am - No matter how often I re-read my blog posts I'm almost guaranteed to spot an error when I'm looking back on a post at a rather unnatural hour. You bet your bottom dollar I'll find one in this tonight.

Winter is coming - Whilst many bloggers find themselves super excited for the arrival of autumn and winter, queue snoods and ankle boots galore I can't be the only one who is secretly miserable inside at the sheer lack of light to come. I really do find it difficult to get nice pictures at that time of year and often spend a lot of my time in august taking photographs that will see me through over that period. I'm yet to buy dedicated lights for my blog as I prefer the look natural light if I'm honest however if you have any good recommendations then please do let me know.

Oh shiny! - Shiny packaging aside from cylinder products (until I discovered blue tac) are the bane of my life when it comes to featuring them on here. The amount of times I have come to edit pictures and have my seen little face glaring back at me on a product; it's not pretty. I have also discovered through this that my floors are clearly not flat; I've chased a few products across the floor in my time.

I'm a gymnast and I didn't know it - Photographing products can be quite the challenge at times, it's not all white card and pretty notebooks folks. The amount of odd positions I've found myself in and things that I have balanced on in the past to get a decent photograph is quite interesting. On many occasions I've found myself standing on a chair leaning over something so far that I'm convinced I will fall off.

Restart EVERYTHING - Yup, I'm not going to lie I have already started the process of going through older blog posts in order to tidy them up by making sure that links are coloured in grey and bold (they used to be blue) and re-sizing photographs. It's so incredibly time consuming and part of me wishes I could just leave it but I just can't, is anybody else like this?

Lists - The amount of lists I create for my blog is endless, I even find myself adding things on that I know I have already done so I can just tick them off (it makes me feel good).

I've also been known to buy pretty stationary just to use as props in blog photos...yes guilty as charged.
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41 comments

  1. Loved this post and I completely agree with everything mentioned! Swatches are definitely the ugliest things ever; I'm trying to include them more due to popular request but I just can not find a way to present them so that they look good! & the whole shiny packaging point is definitely so true! While this tends to be the most aesthetically pleasing packaging in person, it's a total pain to photograph it without catching a dodgy reflection in it...

    Heather, porcelainbeautyx

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  2. I am huge on lists - I have blog post planned up until the end of July! x
    Becoming Becca

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  3. This is all so true!
    I'm absolutely terrified by the idea of swatching things, it somehow always turns out incredibly unappealing. Might have to consider switching to a more swatchless approach to blogging.

    thelatelatte.blogspot.com

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  4. I make so many lists :)


    emily xx


    emilycouture95.blogspot.co.uk

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  5. Couldn't agree more with this post. I myself have discovered I am rather bendy when I need to be :')

    Sian | Siân Marie Beauty
    xo

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  6. Aah yes, the many dilemmas of beauty blogging! Ideally I like the swatch before using, but sometimes I'm too much of a keen bean, or too lazy haha. And yes omg shiny packaging! Super pretty but damn the reflection can be annoying. Mirrors too, my pajamas have been caught in a palette mirror one too many times!

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

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  7. This was so true and everything on the list is me in a nutshell. I just need to edit my work sometimes because I write my post around 3am and the next day I need to fix grammar errors.

    Jackie | fashionxfairytale | bloglovin' |

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  8. This all rings oh so true! I too abhor reflective products - it's so hard not to have a camera reflected back or even worse an untidy room. Ugh.
    I don't ascribe to the "photograph-before-use" school, I think that minimal use it's really noticeable, and if anything make products look like something real rather than a floating web-shop style graphic.

    Dar | www.holylipstick.com

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  9. Fab post sweetie, I’m definitely guilty of not using a product until it has been photographed almost to the point of OCD with it haha. The good thing about tomorrow’s clocks going forward is the extra daylight hehe.

    Charlee XO | CharmedCharlee

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  10. So true. Reformatting old posts is the bane of my life but I can't stop! And don't even get me started on grammar mistakes (I double, triple check every post and yet still managed to spell lipsticks as lispticks in a title!) Sigh!!

    Laura x FloraLoo Two

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  11. These are all painfully true, shiny packaging is the worst thing because I don't realise that I am pulling a ridiculous face in the reflection until it is published.

    Ooh La Luce | Beauty, Life, Fashion

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  12. These are all so true. I have got myself into some difficult positions whilst trying to shade the shiny packaging from the sun whilst still capturing the perfect image with the right ISO, aperture and shutter speed. Oh the glamorous life of a blogger x


    pintsizedbeauty.blogspot.co.uk

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  13. ahhahaha so true!!

    https://aspoonfulofnature.wordpress.com/

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  14. Haha I love creating lists just so I can tick things off. Definitely some blogging conundrums that I completely relate too.

    Kristy | thevioletblonde.com

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  15. This is such a funny yet entirely true post.

    Beth x
    http://www.hellobeth.co.uk

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  16. There's been a few times I've had to balance on various objects just to get a good above shot :D
    www.alicemay.org

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  17. I've often thought about tidying up old posts but often ending up deciding not too, maybe I'll start doing that! I completely feel your pain with clear packaging it's the worst! x


    www.lilliputianrose.co.uk

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  18. I read this blogpost on my phone when you initially published it, and I was nodding along to all of the points! I forgot to remind myself to pop back here and comment when I was on the laptop again! I think the thing with swatches is that it is helpful to see what the shade is like on skin but only if the person if the same skin tone as you - otherwise, like you said, it'd look different anyway. I don't mind how people swatch, or even the lack of it. One things for sure though, there won't be any close ups of my face on the internet. haha, I've tried so many times to get a good close up on my eyes for eyeliner, lips for lipstick but they NEVER look right. It's the same reason why i HATE small compact mirrors, i think my features look sooooo odd and it makes me feel so self conscious xxx

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  19. The dodgy reflection is the bane of my life Heather haha! It's quite funny when you think about it x

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  20. Oh wow now that is incredible! x

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  21. I think you have to do what works for you in the end. Personally I'm rarely happy with my swatch photos which is why I now hardly ever include them, if however you can take awesome ones then why not x

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  22. I make lists for lists! x

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  23. You just never know where taking a blog photo will take you! x

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  24. Better some pyjamas than my face I can assure you! x

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  25. Sometimes I work on my blog really late too and then see a lot of errors, I think we have to know when to stop so we can pick it up again the next day x

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  26. Yes I know what you mean, there's a few things I've featured that I have used before photographing and it doesn't look that bad; I think it just boils down to personal preference in the end x

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  27. Thank you Charlee! Oh yes I'm all for more sunlight :) x

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  28. I'm doing it bit by bit although it is taking me a really long time! I think that's a job for when uni finishes if I'm honest now x

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  29. I never used to either, I've now learnt to look for reflections before I shut my camera and plug it into the pc, it's so much of a faff but I end up having to re-take them if I see reflections x

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  30. Shadows are so annoying and I have yet to find out a good way to combat them x

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  31. I do it all of the time, it makes me feel momentarily better! x

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  32. Thanks Beth, glad you liked it x

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  33. Yup I use that now, it's such a simple yet helps so much. I have a little tripod somewhere that came free with my camera, I really need to start using it more. Hi-five Nindy! x

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  34. Same here Alice, it's an art I find ;) x

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  35. I think it's something to think long and hard about because it takes such a long time x

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  36. Thank you for coming back to leave a comment Sarah, I really appreciate it. Yes exactly, that's one of the issues with swatches although they do give you an idea of how it will took to an extent. I have tried to include more images of products on, lip products are ok I think but eye shadows and mascaras are something I find really quite tricky.


    Compact mirrors are not flattering to anyone I don't think, you have nothing to worry about! :) xx

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  37. I have the swatching dilemma every time and often it puts me off from reviewing blushes and eyeshadows because I feel like I can't write a detailed post without them but I can never get them right :(

    Also your photos are stunning! I don't have the time nor the skill right now to take stunning photos but it's something I hope to develop this summer after uni ^_^

    Iqra |The Blushing Giraffe x

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  38. Ugh, I'm the same about swatch photos! I really wish there was a beautiful way to take swatch photos, but I have yet to find it. The only reason I include them is because I really lie seeing swatches on other blogs, and I kind of figure I should put out what I'd like to read, y'know? I related to all of your other posts. My biggest problem is products running away from me and seeing my reflection in some products. Or when you're super chuffed with the photos and upload them and they're not nice at all... Not nice.
    Ivory Avenue

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  39. I used to be the person to photograph all the new makeup I bought before using them, but a lot of the time they don't turn out the way I want them to, or my style in photography changes by the time I'm ready to feature a certain product. To me it's too much of a hassle, so I don't bother in keeping them in mint condition anymore.

    Winter is the worst for pictures! I really dislike having to photograph everything on a weekend... or not being able to photograph anything because it's too overcast, haha. I've considered getting lights as well, though I've been able to work through with natural light so I'll hold off on it for now.

    becky ♡ star violet

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  40. Ahh I love this post! I hate having to wait to photograph something before I use it as I am a very impatient person! Oh gosh, for someone who's an editor on her school's newspaper staff, I find it horrendous how often I see grammar mistakes after I publish. Just today, I encountered the same problem of almost falling over while standing on my chair to get a good snap at my breakfast.


    Emily | ahemitsemme.blogspot.com

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