Behind the Scenes Tag

Today’s post is a tag that Stashmatters tagged me in a few weeks ago. It was really interesting to read the behind-the-scenes of her blog posts, so I thought it would be fun to share what I do. A big thanks to Stashy for tagging me!

Tag Questions

1) What camera do you use?

I switch between using a point-and-shoot camera and my phone. My phone is the ASUS Zenfone 2. People seem to get weirded out that I don’t use either an iPhone or Samsung, but I frigging love this phone. My point and shoot is the Canon Powershot SD1400 IS. It’s nothing special, it’s just the camera I had on hand when I first started blogging!

 Source 1. Source 2.

 

GIMP.png

2) What editing system do you use?

I use GIMP, which is a free program. When I started blogging, I knew I would need something to edit my photos, so I Googled ‘free photo editing programs’ and GIMP was the first one to came up. The name sounds familiar from my childhood, although I don’t think I ever used it until I started blogging. I loved using Photoshop as a teen and got used to how much that program can do compared to GIMP, but it works for what I need it to do!

 

3) Do you use artificial or natural lighting?
I use natural lighting about 90% of the time. There are three locations where I make my blog posts:

  1. The backyard deck (I hope the worn-off paint gives my photos a “rustic” feel but it more likely just looks like the deck needs to be repainted, hehe 😛 ):

IMG_3064a

2. The kitchen counter:

Jpeg

3. In front of a window:

My parents’ home has a floor-to-ceiling window, which I take pictures in front of. I use two pieces of white poster paper as the backdrop and floor. The house gets tons of natural lighting, but somehow the brightness doesn’t translate in photos – that really surprised me when I first started taking pictures for my blog. As a result, I try not to take photos indoors if I don’t have to.

IMG_3063a.JPG
Yeah, I know you’re jealous of my super sophisticated setup 😛

However, I am trying not to rely so much on natural light anymore, considering that for nearly half the year, the daylight is too short and/or it’s too cold and snowy for me to take pictures outdoors. I just purchased an LED lamp from OttLite not too long ago, so I’m hoping that will help with taking better indoor photos.

 

Source.

4) What is the top item on your filming wishlist?
My answer is similar to Stashy’s: big umbrella light with a large white backdrop. Would also love a more professional camera (not that I’d know how to use it :P)

 

5) What is your favorite day in the week to write / photograph?
I tend to write on weeknights after work. As I find photographs more time-consuming, I try to do most of my photographing on the weekends, as that’s when there is the best chance I have of getting an extended block of free time to take pictures. Usually I end up taking photos on Sundays, and then I’ll usually edit the photos on weeknights as well.

 

6) Do you plan your posts. If so, how?
I used to plan out my posting schedule via Excel. When I first started, I had three months’ worth of posts planned! However, I started a new position at work shortly after I started blogging, and I found that I was/am doing a lot of unplanned overtime, which made me fall behind schedule since I had less and less time to work on my blog after work. I now try to plan my posts two weeks at a time , and I don’t use Excel anymore. Since two weeks’ worth of blog posts is only 4 posts for me, it’s fairly easy to keep track of them in my drafts. Unfortunately, I find that I still fall behind on posts sometimes because, say, I had planned to edit my photos Wednesday night so that I can post on Thursday, but then I end up working late and couldn’t take the photos. I think that just comes down to getting more of my blogs finished as early as possible – it’s a work in progress!

 

 7) How long does it take you to write and photograph a post?
I probably spend about an hour to an hour and a half doing the writing (which includes editing while I’m writing), and then I’ll come back to the post later on and spend about 15 minutes doing a final edit before posting. Photographing and editing the photos seem to take me forever. There have been quite a few times when the picture looks good (ie bright, clear) on my camera or phone, but looks much too dark or blurry on my computer, so I have to set everything up again and retake the photo(s). Then I spend some time editing the photos. I would say photos take me about 1-2 hours in total.

 

8) How many hours do you spend editing an average post?
Hmm, I don’t have a straightforward answer to this as I tend to edit as I write, then do an edit of the whole post as soon as it’s done being written (usually the night before it’s posted). I’ll leave it and come back to it with fresh eyes the day it’s posted, at which point I’ll do a 15-minute final reread right before posting.

 

9) Favorite types of posts to write?
Oooh, that’s difficult. I think I love writing the type of posts I love to read the most myself, which are favourites posts and reviews. I also love posting eye looks, but those are more time-consuming posts. Some of my favourite posts I’ve done are:

Review: Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector

2016 Mid-Year Favourites

My HG ‘My Lips but Better’ Lipstick

Bronze and Gold Autumn Inspired Eyes

Fall Must-Haves

 

10) Do people at your school or work know about your blog?
My coworkers don’t know about my blog, and only some of my friends do. I haven’t told anyone about my blog – it’s my fiancé who goes around telling everyone about it (yet he doesn’t read my blog himself, ahem!) All of our friends will say “oh, that’s pretty cool”, but don’t really take an interest in actually reading it. That seems to make sense, because I don’t think any of them are big into reading blogs. It works out, because I prefer that they don’t read it, anyways!

 

11) What is your process of thinking of a blog idea?
Usually I just write about whatever I happen to be thinking about or using in terms of makeup. I do get some ideas that I know I want to talk about, but don’t want to immediately do a post about. In that case, I will set up a draft with just the title of the topic and maybe a sentence or two, so that I remember to go back and write about it later.
12) Do you feel awkward filming in front of other people or in public?
I don’t photograph in public, although when I take pictures on my backyard deck, the people walking by on the street (which doesn’t happen often) and possibly my neighbours can see. I sometimes wonder if they wonder what I’m doing.

 

13) Do you and your blogging friends plan out posts together?
I have never done a collab before! The idea of it sounds super fun, although I feel like it puts a lot of pressure on me to deliver!

 

14) What is your subscriber goal by the end of the year?
Honestly, I don’t have a subscriber goal. Whatever happens, happens! I started my blog as a stress-reliever or escape from work. That, combined with my competitive nature, makes me think that having a subscriber goal would no longer make blogging fun for me because it would become a numbers game! My only goal in terms of blogging is to get better at photography – I know I’m not very good at it right now and that there is much room for improvement!

 

15) Who do you tag to do this tag next?

A lot of people I follow have already done this tag, so not tagging anyone in particular – anyone reading this should do it! I love to know what goes on behind the scenes of your blog posts 🙂

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7 thoughts on “Behind the Scenes Tag

  1. Yay, you did the tag! 🙂
    I think I have that same Canon camera – it’s so compact, so handy! (except I dropped it when we went to Iceland and now I don’t trust the zoom)
    And you’re the only person I know who has an ASUS phone… what the heck? 😛
    You ACTUALLY have an authentic worn deck as opposed to everyone else who uses faux backdrops! 😆 You’re the envy of the whole blogging world! 😛
    You’re so luck to have multiple natural light sources. The only place we have light coming in is our bedroom window, which is 75% covered by our dresser! I hope the OttLite works for you – it’s good for what I need but poses a new set of challenges with reflections and shadows.
    Funny we both do blogging after work in the evenings… it’s like our “homework” time! 😛
    That’s so sweet your fiance is your PR person haha! My So also “promotes” my blog… to his guy friends, who may or may not tell their wives / gfs… hahaha.
    Also congrats on winning the UD palette from Robyn’s giveaway! Can’t wait to see a review / swatches / eye look! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Eeek for dropping your camera! You’re right, the compact size is great, especially for travel!
      Hehehe, everyone has the same reaction as you about the ASUS phone. I didn’t want to buy from the phone providers cause it gets so expensive, so I started looking into unlocked phones. My fiancé the tech nerd recommended this one. I really like it!
      Lol, I didn’t realize that the worn deck is a hot commodity! I only use it because it has the greatest exposure to sunlight (unfortunately the sun beats down on me if I take pictures in the middle of the day, and I sweat like a beast).
      I am pretty lucky about the natural sunlight, although sadly it’s not always quite enough for blog photos! You are so right about the OttLite creating shadows – I tested it out the other day and that’s what it did. It’s also not quite bright enough…I think I need to buy a second one!
      Hehe it’s totally like homework…but fun!
      Lol, I love that your SO tells his guy friends! That’s so cute. Does he read your blog?
      Thanks, Stashy! Can’t wait to blog about the UD palette!

      Liked by 1 person

      • What’s the operating system on that ASUS? I just got rid of my Blackberry for a Samsung (a moment of silence for my tactile keyboard) and I quite like the Android system.
        The SO doesn’t read the blog anymore, he did at the beginning but the subject matter is of absolutely NO interest to him lol!

        Liked by 1 person

          • Oh yes, my work phone is iPhone. It’s ok. I don’t love it. I only have the 5S though so maybe the newer ones are amazing. At one point the iPhone had the advantage over the Blackberry due to all the apps but now the Samsung is on par with the apps!

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Like stashy said, I’m Jealous of your real background – I have to fake it with wall paper! There are a few good spots in my house for backgrounds, but rarely do they locate themselves with good light. I prefer wallpaper so I can move it anywhere – usually on our patio furniture out the back!
    My fiance doesn’t read mine either, he wrote one blog post for his work and asked me to read it, and I read it, and said you now have 600 of mine to catch up on! But like yours he does tell other people about it!
    xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t know why I’ve never even thought of wallpaper, but it’s an excellent way to get an interesting background! I think I might try that next instead of the white poster paper (which is getting dirty from makeup getting all over it).
      Hehe, I think it’s cute that they tell other people. Even though they don’t read our blogs, it’s still a way of acknowledging and supporting it!

      Liked by 1 person

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