This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. Please visit my disclosure page for more information.
Today, I want to talk about beginner blogging equipment. When I first started my blog – not too long ago – I had the bare minimum. An iPhone for a camera, a living room window for lighting, and a free WordPress account. And, to be honest, this is all you really need to get you started. There’s no reason to spend money on something you aren’t even sure you like doing yet. Throw some posts up. Share them with your friends. And worry about upgrading the equipment you use for your blog when you want to take it seriously.
When that time does come, however, you might want some nice middle-of-the-road options to start with before you run out to buy a fancy camera and the world’s brightest ring light. So, I’m going to share with you the equipment that I’m currently using for this blog.
When I first started looking at what other bloggers were using, I found myself navigating through post after post and video after video of iPhone camera beginners and established bloggers with equipment I wasn’t prepared to buy yet. I wish that I had found a post like this one that taught me how to invest in myself and my blog, for sure, but also save a bit of money while I figured out how far this new hobby/job of mine was going to take me.
Without rambling any further, here is all of my beginner blogging equipment.
Camera: Sony a5100
The very first thing I bought when I decided to upgrade my blogging equipment was the Sony a5100 camera. It’s a great camera for the price, and I recommend it to anyone who isn’t quite ready to move on to a really complicated camera. It’s simple to use, even for a beginner like me, and has some features that make it work well for the photos I take. First of all, I LOVE the tilt screen. It makes it sooo much easier to get good photos of yourself without the help of another person or trying to guess where you are in the frame. The settings are easy to navigate, and there’s a really great skin-blurring filter that is perfect for close-up face and makeup shots. I also like that this camera is so small and lightweight. I can just throw it in my bag and take it anywhere! Oh, and it syncs up with an app on your phone through wifi, so it takes all of the headache out of trying to transfer your photos.
Lighting Kit: Fancierstudio 9004S Softbox Lighting Kit
Soon after I discovered how very little sunlight we actually get through our windows, Megan surprised me with the Fancierstudio 9004S Softbox Lighting Kit. I love having this kit because it made me less dependent on natural sunlight and I can take high-quality photos at home even at nighttime. The kit comes with two softbox lights, and each one has four fluorescent bulbs. Having two boxes really makes for more even lighting, and the brightness can be adjusted by choosing between turning on two or four of the bulbs in each box. I will say that the lights are a bit top-heavy, but I have the base adjusted wide and haven’t knocked them over so far.
WordPress Premium Plan
I have recently upgraded to the Business Plan (so I could upload my own theme and plugins), but – when I first made the upgrade from my free WordPress account – I did it with the WordPress Premium Plan. I really do believe that having your own “.com” domain, rather than the free “.wordpress.com” domain, makes you look more professional and serious to visitors coming to your site. This is the main reason that I upgraded in the first place. Additionally, the Premium Plan allows you to monetize your site and, depending on the size of your audience, begin the process of turning your blog into a way to earn money.
And that’s it! Eventually, I will move on to fancy cameras that I can’t understand. But, for now, I am more than happy with my beginner blogging equipment.
And to reiterate one more time, YOU DO NOT NEED TO BUY ANYTHING TO START YOUR BLOG. Just do it. See how you like it. Post your best camera phone pictures, write some killer content, and see how far you want to take this.