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Fully Focused: Instagram fame possible with rule of thirds, juxtaposition, good lighting

Columnist Lauren Bacho discusses tips to make your photos more interesting on Instagram. 


If you’re lucky, you might become an Instagram celebrity with the right combination of artsy photos and dedicated friends. Of course, Instagram fame isn’t about having good photos in this day and age, but it’s a good addition to your profile to help get more likes.

Rule of thirds: It is the simplest photo construct. Just take your subject and have it sit on the left or right side of the frame. If it’s a vertical, then put the focal point at the top or the bottom of the picture. It’ll do wonders for your composition. It’s much more appealing to look at something asymmetrical.

Beautiful light: Look for it, seek it out, chase it, wake up early for it, stay out late for it, create it. Do anything and everything you can to make sure your photos are taken with good light. No one likes a photo when the people in it have ugly shadows on their faces. My column on iPhone lighting has some good tips on how to combat the poor lighting and create something good.

Pattern: Find graphic scenes with repeating lines and shapes. Take portraits of your friends in front of them. Take snapshots of strangers walking through the scene. Take pictures of the graphic without anyone in it even. Capture something abstract.

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Juxtaposition: My favorite, of course. Look for things that are out of the ordinary. Find contrasting things. Search for opposites. Look at layers. See how the foreground interacts with the background to make images almost comical. Find visual puns.

Color in a monochromatic scene: Find people wearing red, it always stands out. Wait for them to walk into a grey/ black scene. Look for someone wearing yellow in the middle of a park or green area. The key is to look for one thing that stands out in a scene because of it’s color.

I don’t want to overwhelm my readers so I will stop with those constructs. They are some pretty basic ways to improve your photography and make your Instagram artsier. It might get you more likes on your photos if they’re good. Being popular and having 100 of your closest friends like your photos can only get you so far. Instagram popularity is about talent, too. If you can fake being artsy then you can make it as an Instagram celebrity. Good luck.

Lauren Bacho is a sophomore studying photojournalism and a photo editor for The Post. Do you have more photo tips for Instagramers? Tweet her @Visual_Bacho or email her at


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