Behind The Bookstagram #1: How I Take My Pictures

Welcome back to Reading, Reading, Reading!

And welcome to the first instalment in my Behind The Bookstagram mini-series! For more details on it, click here. In this first post, I will be sharing with you my favourite types of pictures to take and post on my Bookstagram account. It is important to mention that ALL of my pictures are taken on my iPhone 8 Plus, and are usually taken in portrait mode.


Upon looking at my Bookstagram, you probably notice a few different patterns and types of posts that I frequently take. Right off the bat, you can see that I every other picture is some sort of a book stack or bookish thing, while the next picture is of an individual book. I never post two individual book pictures back-to-back, as I think this looks cleaner and more visually appealing. You can also see some of the different types of photos I like to take, including individual books, book-stacks, and random bookshelf pictures.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

PHOTO #1: Individual Book
Level of Difficulty: 1/5

The most basic (and in my opinion, the most important) picture that I frequently post on my Bookstagram, is a photo of an individual book. I love to angle the book on my bookshelves, and show the depth and size of my books. Sometime I will add decorations or props next to the books if it fits the theme of the post, or sometimes I will place the book next to other specific books, so that you can see a particular book-spine. These photos always get a great amount of interactions, and they are very straight forward and to the point. It is obvious to see exactly which book you are highlight and featuring on your account. I always use portrait mode when taking these pictures, and focus it on the book the best I can.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

PHOTO #2: Dual Covers
Level of Difficulty: 2/5

The dual covers picture style is semi-new to me. I hadn’t been taking many pictures in this way before until very recently, when I started to want to feature more than one book at a time, without using a traditional book-stack photo style. I always find this photo slightly harder to take than an individual book style, as I seem to have to play around with how much of one book I want to show, and how little of the second book I want to show. For this picture, I will typically place two books on one side of my bookshelf, place on in front of the other, and finally play around with how much of each book I want to show in the picture. I typically take these photos in portrait mode, however they can be harder for the camera to focus on since you are technically focusing on more than one object at once.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

PHOTO #3: Standard Vertical Book-Stack
Level of Difficulty: 1.25/5

The standard vertical book-stack picture is a very basic but beautiful bookstagram picture. This style allows you to showcase many books at one, so it’s perfect to use when sharing your monthly wrap-ups and/or TBRs. You can play around with this photo style by colour coordinating the book spines, choosing books that relate to each other by either theme or genre, or by placing the books from smallest to largest or vice versa. I typically always place the largest book on the bottom, and place smaller books up on top. I place my books in the exact middle of one individual shelf, and try to centre the stack in the photo to the best of my abilities. I always take these pictures in portrait mode, as the blur of the books in the background helps to define the book-stack.

Processed with VSCO with hb1 preset

PHOTO #4: Horizontal Book-Stack
Level of Difficulty: 2/5

This is one of my favourite picture styles to post on instagram! I find horizontal book-stacks super visually appealing and classy. To take this picture, I will only use three or four books, since when you are using a lot of books for this picture, it looks quite messy. I normally try to take a picture of the stack slightly off centre, so I can showcase some other books or items in the background. Similarly to the vertical stack, you can play around with the books you are featuring, and try to colour coordinate them or pick books that all fall under the same genre. I always use portrait mode to take this picture.

PHOTO #5: Book Store Shelf Inception
Level of Difficulty 3.5/5

And lastly, we have my all-time favourite Bookstagram picture style! This one can feature your favourite bookstore shelves, centred perfectly in your photo. In my local bookstore, there are individual shelves that intercept with a giant bookshelf on the wall, so I love to take pictures of them in one photo (see image on the right). On occasion, I will feature I newly purchased book by holding up the book in the middle of the shelves (see image on the left). This photo style can get tricky when there are other people in the row that you are in, or when you cannot perfectly centre the book in between shelves.

I hope you enjoyed learning about the different styles of Bookstagram pictures I post regularly! If you are inspired by any of these pictures and take photos inspired by them and post them on your bookstagram account, please tag me and I will share them in my Insta story! If you are interested in learning about other styles of bookstagram photos, let me know in the comments and I may make a part two of this post!

FOLLOW ME ON INSTAGRAM: @ReadingReadingReading

Good Night Book Owls!

9 thoughts on “Behind The Bookstagram #1: How I Take My Pictures

  1. Oh my god your pictures are so pretty !!
    Thank you very much for the tips, I shall try that whenever i’d try to take a bookish picture!

  2. Great post. I’m not great at posting on my bookstagram, I need to be better.
    Gemma @ Gemma’s Book Nook

What are your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s