Four steps to better planner photos

Better Planner PhotosDecorating your planner is tons of fun, but let’s be honest: Part of the fun of decorating your planner is sharing photos of it on Instagram and in planner Facebook groups.

I’ve seen a few people around the online planner community asking for planner photo advice, so I wanted to share a few quick tips for taking gorgeous photos of your weekly spread.

Before we get started, let’s get something out there: Just like decorating your planner, there’s no wrong way to take photos of your planner. As long as you’re having fun and you like your finished product, you’re succeeding!


  • Lighting! Lighting can make or break your photos. I love using indirect natural light for my planner photos.
    I experimented with all of the windows in my house until I found the two that have the best light — one works bettter in the morning and the other works better in the afternoon.
    Keep in mind that while you want bright light, if it’s too harsh it can create harsh shadows in your photo. That may or may not be what you’re going for. If you’re dealing with unwanted harsh shadows, move a little further away from the window or wait an hour or two until the light is a little less direct.
  • Background The background is another huge part of your photo. The most important thing is to find something that’s going to enhance your photo, but not distract from your planner.
    I love white backgrounds, so I almost always use a sheet of white poster board for the background in my photos. I also occasionally use colored poster board and scrapbook paper.
  • Editing You can get your photos to look pretty great just by adjusting the brightness and contrast in Instagram. (I play around with each photos, but I usually adjust the brightness a little up and the contrast a little down.)
    If you want to take your editing a step further, there are some awesome apps that make it really easy! I love Color Story by A Beautiful Mess. 80 percent of my photos are edited with the Tulip filter in the Fresh package of that app.
  • Props and styling Props are definitely not necessary, but once you get the basics down they’re an easy way to have even more fun with your photos! I have almost as much fun styling my planner photos as I do decorating my planner.
    So, what props should you use? Anything! Sheets of stickers, washi pens and scissors are obvious props that look great. If you’ve used a specific color theme in the weekly spread you’re taking a photo of, look around your house for smaller objects that match. I’ve used coffee mugs, earbuds and sunglasses just to name a few things. Don’t be afraid to get a little creative; unexpected props can  get you a really fun photo!
    To style your items, just play around with them until they look right. There’s no wrong answer. It’s kind of like decorating your planner: the more you do it, the more you’ll develop a style and learn what works for you.

I’d love to see how these tips improve your planner photos! Tag me on Instagram @katietheplanner if you put these tips to use.


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