I’d like to share with you the many of the resources I used to make this food blog possible. I know if I had a resource similar to this when I started my site, it would have been much smoother. What a person uses for a site or photography is not always obvious and I know I have similar questions when visiting other websites too. I hope this will help you get set up and started in the right direction.
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HostGator has provided me with good service for years. It’s simple to get setup with their 1-click WordPress installation. They have very affordable and reliable hosting. Read more getting set up on my How to Start a Blog guide.
After giving up trying to tweak my own free templates, I wanted an upgrade. I ended up comparing some of the top 5 or so studios developing premium WordPress themes and ended up going with Genesis. The Genesis framework is flexible and has good functionality I like. A few reasons I chose it over others was their thriving support forum and frequent updates.
Free WordPress themes
I started out using a free WordPress theme for a few years. It’s a quick and easy way to get set up and there are hundreds of choices to pick from. After a while I didn’t like the fact that many other people had the same look so I spent many hours trying to figure out how to edit it to my liking. It did look slightly better, but after a few years, I upgraded this site to Genesis.
This the main camera that I shoot with. It’s fairly compact, very lightweight, and does everything I need. I especially like the large LCD display on this. It helps me frame and set up shots a lot better than the viewfinder.
This is the lens I use almost all of the time and absolutely love it. This came from my older camera so didn’t need (or have) a focus motor, so I only manually focus on this. If you’re using it on a camera body without a focus motor such as the D5100, you would want this 50mm lens instead. This is a fast lens, so it’s good for low light (when not using a tripod) and it gives lots of options for adjusting bokeh (blurred backgrounds). The only time I’ll swap this lens out is for this 20mm lens in tighter spacer spaces including some overhead shots.
When the name of something is also used as a verb, you can bet that it pulls its weight. Photoshop has become a standard in photo editing. For me, post-processing is absolutely necessary. I could sit there at the camera tweaking all the settings until I get the perfect image, but I’d rather be spending time there working on general lighting and composition. There are also other imperfections and adjustments to be managed with Adobe Photoshop.
This is one that I picked up recently. It is geared more towards simplification as opposed to the multitude of other things Photoshop does. Lightroom focuses on album management in which you can rate and tag images. It also pulls a lot of EXIF data for sorting and viewing. It makes it easy to batch edit images based on specific adjustments you have made. It gets the job done for photo editing. However, note that Photoshop can do everything Lightroom does (that’s why it costs more), but it’s the extras are not needed for most people.