It’s no secret that Instagram is my holy grail and go to choice for photo sharing and social sharing in general. I’ve always loved Instagram and I don’t ever see it becoming less than my favorite app (though that re-design was absurd, I think I’ve semi gotten over it now *sigh*). Since I love photographing coffee shops and my cappuccinos, I wanted to share a few tips with you on how I get those perfectly instagrammed coffee shots! This is of course my opinion and you could totally hate my photos! In which case, move along Yvonne…

Lighting

First things first. Lighting is your everything. Without good lighting, I wouldn’t recommend posting that photo of your coffee. This is primarily why I only go to coffee shops that are bright and modern, and are not in some sort of 18th century underground dungeon. If I was sipping on a cappuccino at bloody Hogwarts I probably wouldn’t post it (have you seen The Great Hall’s lighting?). Only grab photos when you have good natural lighting. Also, that’s an exaggerated lie. I would totally post that…

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Minimal Distractions

Clutter sucks. We hate it in our lives and I hate seeing it even more in coffee shops. Maybe hate is a strong word, but I do try to seek out coffee shops that provide minimal distractions. You want the focus of that photo to be your coffee. If there are distracting things around the table, move them out of the way. Some coffee shops are also very eclectic which carries distractions in its entire decor. Try to avoid these places and stick with minimal clean lines so you can really highlight your beautiful coffee art!

A photo posted by @coatandcoffee on

Flat Lay

The flat lay is most often the type of coffee shots you’ll see on Instagram. It’s when you snap a photo of your coffee by standing above everything and hanging your phone out over the table. I mean, you’ve seen people do this at restaurants probably a million times, and there’s good reason for that. This is a super flattering angle for a photo and it’s the best way to incorporate the coveted latte art in to your photo. By standing over your items and taking a photo, you’re able to capture a lot in just one snap.

A photo posted by @coatandcoffee on

Props

When I got to a coffee shop I either always try to bring a few props to lay around my shots, or I just use what’s in my bag already (I am pretty much Marry Poppins status at this point anyway). It’s rare people will go to great lengths to bring props from home, and if you’re not super serious about coffee, there’s probably no reason to. If you have a pair of sunglasses in your bag, those usually work well. Other things that can be used are wallets, cosmetics, other foods (an obvious good reason to order a donut), a planner, a cell phone, reading glasses, a newspaper, book, or magazine, etc.. I personally like using a food such as a pastry, or using some sunnies or a wallet. These small props help bring life to your photo without taking too much away from the coffee. 1 – 3 props is the perfect ratio of props to coffee, so don’t get too carried away!

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Tones

Be aware of the tones that you are working with in the coffee shop. You want to make your coffee stand out. If you have a black table with a black coffee cup, chances are your photo isn’t going to turn out very well. Look for major contrast in your coffee photos like a white table with a black cup. Marble flat lays are what tends to do best on Instagram. Everyone is after the marble table these days, so keep that in mind next time you choose a coffee shop! If you’re going to work with wood tones make sure you have GREAT natural lighting, or else your photo will appear quite orange.

A photo posted by @coatandcoffee on

Order For Here

The best coffee shots are going to be the ones you order ‘for here’. To go cups generally don’t make for great photos, but there are a few exceptions like Alfred Coffee because they just have really great to go cups. As an American, I am very very used to the idea of taking your coffee to go and I definitely prefer it. But if I’m looking for that perfect photo, I typically order a cappuccino or latte to drink there. Either one usually makes for a great photo! If you do want to grab something to go, try getting something iced and then removing the lid for a nice photo. The straw also adds a nice touch.

A photo posted by @coatandcoffee on

You

Lastly, try adding a little bit of you in to the photos you take. Hands are always great to incorporate in to your coffee photos especially if you have a friend with you. If I am wearing something cute that day, I’ll make sure to take a photo incorporating either my shoes or my jacket, or maybe a few accessories I am wearing like a watch or ring. There is a whole Instagram dedicated to coffee and clothes!

A photo posted by @coatandcoffee on

These are great places to start if you’re wanting to diversify your feed with some coffee shots. Whatever you do, never ever feel stupid for taking photos. People will stare and ask you things like “are you ever going to drink that?” Yes that has happened. But we all have passions for different things and whether we want to admit it or not, we’ve all snapped a photo of our coffee at least once. I hope these tips help!

What is your favorite thing to post to your Instagram? Leave me a comment below!

90 Comments

  1. I can not count how many times I have come across the flat lay angle of taking pictures of coffee and latte on instagram , and you’re right , you can’t do all that art work on the surface of the cup and not present it in the right angle. I really enjoyed reading this post . Lovely pictures from your page too. Thanks for the tips.

    http://www.stylenbeautylounge.com

    Reply
    1. I know! Sometimes I hate that I feel like I have to have the perfect lighting. I really like the feature on the iPhone that lets you change the exposure. It’s such a help!

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  2. The title of this post made me laugh, so perfect! I don’t remotely have a clue how to Instagram coffee so these tips are perfect! You have some serious IG skills so clearly you’re doing something right. Thanks for sharing your secrets! Good point about Hogwarts lighting by the way. Definitely an Instagramer’s nightmare.

    Reply
    1. Thank you Kasie! I would totally still post from Hogwarts, but had to add it for dramatic effect. 😉 I mean, it’s freaking Hogwarts! Haha…

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  3. These are such great tips, girlie! I definitely agree that lighting is key, especially when it comes to posting on Instagram! The brighter and more in focus, as well as less edited, certainly does better, at least with the photos I share. I’ll definitely be keeping the rest of your tips in mind when thinking about sharing my cup on Insta, thanks so much for sharing and I hope you have the best weekend ahead, beauty!

    XO,

    Jalisa
    http://www.thestylecontour.com

    Reply
    1. You are welcome Jalisa! So glad you liked my tips. I definitely like the brighter and crisp looking photos as well. Cheers to coffee!

      Author Reply
  4. Enjoyed your post so much! Definitely lighting is a game changer! Taking my coffee or bowl shots in the kitchen where’s the best lighting. Also marble is the new black, who doesn’t love it? Great insta pictures babe! x

    Have a nice weekend,
    Andreea
    http://couturezilla.com/

    Reply
    1. Thanks Andreea! The kitchen is definitely one of the best places because usually there is a lot of natural light. And yes to marble being the new black!! 🙂

      Author Reply
    1. Thanks Amber! Hope you had a great weekend! I am to to-go girl myself because I am always in a rush haha.

      Author Reply
  5. Wow this is a great post with nice tips! I tried to capture several times and instagram my.coffee but I failed miserably haha! I think that my main problem is lighting!

    Yiota
    Pinkdaisyloves.blogspot.com

    Reply
  6. Aw I love this light hearted post, really helpful! I always love to make new blogger friends by the way, let me know if you would like to follow each other and stay in touch! x

    adelelydia.blogspot.com

    Reply
  7. I’ve never instagrammed coffee (my intolerances/allergies may play a part in that!) but I love your tips, and will definitely keep them in mind 🙂

    Pop over to my blog!

    Sarah
    sarahinks.co.uk

    Reply
    1. Aw sorry to hear that! I’m sure you have it down to a science now though. Can’t imagine my life personally without coffee haha. Hope you are having a great week!

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