In News, Photo Tips


By: Meredith Clark – Digital Photography School

Let me just come right out and say it – I think Pinterest is amazing. Not only is it a wealth of information when it comes to recipes and easy craft projects for my two kids, but it is also an incredible source for both photography instruction and inspiration. As a photographer, I am constantly inspired by the images that I see while browsing the “Photography” category on Pinterest, and I think it can be a really valuable tool in terms of identifying your personal style in photography as well as pushing yourself as a photographer.

That said, I think it goes without saying that Pinterest is not always used appropriately. We’ve probably all had a prospective client email us asking, “Can you do this?” with a link to a particular pin on Pinterest, where the client means that exact pose, backdrop, and that exact style of post processing. This isn’t inspiration, it’s flat-out stealing. But Pinterest really can be a great resource when used correctly, so here are some tips on the best way to use Pinterest for photography inspiration:

1. Don’t (Only) Browse Your Favorites

If you’re a newborn photographer, don’t just search Pinterest for newborn photos. Rather, try browsing the general photography category, or searching for more general terms like “golden hour” or “high contrast photos”. I’m a firm believer that portrait photographers can be inspired by landscapes, and vice versa. There’s no good reason to limit yourself!

2. Click Through

Once you find an image that you love, take the time to click through the link and make sure that (a) the pin leads to the proper photograph or specific blog post, (b) the correct photographer is credited (Google is not a photographer), and (c) that the photographer wants the image to be pinned. Many photographers pin their own photos and encourage others to repin, or include “pin now” buttons on their blog, which generally makes me feel comfortable with repinning their work. Others install a script that will not allow images from that website to be pinned, which is pretty self-explanatory that they’d prefer their work did NOT appear on Pinterest. If you’re not sure whether or not it’s okay to pin an image after visiting the original website, it’s a good idea to shoot the photographer a quick email or leave a comment asking if they’re open to their images being pinned. This is really new territory without much legal precedent, so I just think it’s better to be safe than sorry!

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