20 At-Home Photoshoot Ideas to Try While You’re Stuck Inside

Image credit: @aby_lawrence/@d_e_n_t_i_c_o/@junewong.jw

Tired of scrolling through Instagram wishing you could get creative outside? Well, lucky for you, there are plenty of ways to capture easy snapshots without leaving your house. From backdrops to looks, here are 20 at-home photoshoot ideas to sprinkle some fun into your feed.

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Backdrops

1. Backyard

Forget about heading to the park or daydreaming about your next tropical adventure, when you have a plant-filled paradise in the backyard. Whether you choose to stand in front of your largest (and proudest) plant or lay in a bed of roses, your outdoor oasis can be a lush backdrop that also shows off what a great plant parent you are.

2. Print Clippings

Remember covering your walls with the latest movie or crush of the month (hello, Zac Efron). How about bringing back some nostalgic memories and dusting off those old teen magazines you have stored in the attic? Just cover a blank wall with any clippings you can find and now your background is literally screaming with interesting stories.

3. Fun Wallpaper

If home décor is your forte, highlight your fave wallpaper in the house and let it do all the talking. No need to invest in photoshop work when you can take photos in front of the whimsical wall you already have.

4. Bedsheets

Possibly the easiest DIY backdrop ever? The options are endless, so grab any sheet (though we prefer white, black or grey) and prepare to look like you’re in a photography studio. Tape or pin it to a wall, lay it on the ground or even hang it over some furniture.

5. Milk Bath

While sharing your spa day in the bath is a nice flex for lazy Sundays, upgrade your next bath with bath bombs, fake florals and maybe…milk? When Ariana Grande shot “God Is a Woman” in a unicorn-colored bath, we knew we had to try to recreate it ever since. Just fill up your tub with equal parts milk and warm water to create the translucent look (and yes, milk is OK to dip in, and thanks to its ingredients, it does super well for the skin) or try a water and bath bomb combo instead. Then, add some floating objects (like fake flowers or confetti), set your camera timer and sink into your design.

Props

6. Your New-Found Hobby

What daily activity do you enjoy and want to share with the world? Is it running, embroidery or even attempting to recreate Bob Ross paintings? Whatever you’re interested in, capture the moment in action, while you’re preparing or even the end result.

7. Mirrors

What started as the “outdoor mirror challenge” on TikTok has bloomed into an easy (but weird) idea to try at home. All you need is, well, a mirror (doesn’t matter the size as long as you can carry it), the subject (aka you) and a great open space to capture your reflection.

8. Food

Let’s face it: Food pics are always in. Many of us have found solace in cooking and baking, so what better way to show off your new skills than with a snapshot of your creation? Just grab your concoction, lay it down (or hold it in your hand) and let your food be the model. Bonus if you have a little furry friend make an appearance in the pic to “admire” your work.

9. Books

Spotlight your current, favorite or prettiest book—play coy by covering your face with the book, pretend to read a chapter or just place it on its own in a well-lit location.

10. Your Favorite Products

Give your go-to products the editorial look with a nice flat lay. Choose beauty, fashion or any products that are currently sparking joy during social distancing. Take a simple background (we recommend a magazine, printed paper or even your bright countertop), round up your items and start positioning them any way you like. Take the photo overhead (this is essential for the flay lay vibe) to get all the products in one shot.

Lighting

11. Snow Globe lighting

You don’t need state-of-the-art lighting to play with lighting patterns into your images. Surprisingly, all you need is a knitted blanket. (No, we’re not kidding.) Bring back your winter bedding, head under the covers and watch the sun pierce gently through the small holes for an added snow globe effect.

12. Golden Hour

Hey Alexa, play “Golden Hour” by Kacey Musgraves. In photography, the term means to capture an image shortly before or after a sunset. The popular lighting idea is all about timing with no disruption from any shadows. The “magical hour” can last 20 to 30 minutes, so grab your camera (and check the time) to capture the moment.

13. Shadow Play

Impress your friends by controlling the shadows (no lighting equipment or phone app needed). In photography, the term means to capture an image shortly before or after a sunset so there are no shadows. How to create this abstract look? All you’ll need is an empty toilet paper roll (yes, seriously), tape and your phone. Just tape the roll over your phone’s back camera for a DIY micro lens. (Bonus: Tape a transparent colored gel over the roll for an enhance look.)

Looks

14. Pillow Challenge

Another odd but interesting challenge to hit the internet is the #PillowChallenge. It went viral in April, and celebs like Tracee Ellis Ross, Halle Berry and Anne Hathaway have joined the craze. Grab your most festive pillow, wrap a belt around your waist and flaunt at the camera because this is what we’re doing now.

15. Outrageous Makeup

Take a risk and have fun with an out-of-the-box makeup look. Give your bright lid, bold lip or bomb highlight the spotlight in a close-up portrait.

16. Pop Culture References

Many events were canceled this year, but that didn’t stop people from recreating some popular Met Gala looks. Let Halloween come early and replicate your fave pop culture moment. Is it an album cover, meme or even the time Beyoncé broke the internet with her pregnancy news? The options are endless, and the only requirement is finding items already around the house to replicate the moment.

17. WFH #OOTD

Loungewear, but make it chic. Share your comfy look with a daily #ootd. The location, pose and outfit are entirely up to you. You’re the model and your home is the runway. Brownie points if your look is professional on top and party on the bottom.

Mixed Media

18. Facetime

We’ve been screenshotting our Zoom meetings this whole time, so why not turn it into a virtual photo shoot. Celebs like Demi Lovato and Cindy Crawford have jumped on board with the new photo idea and the results look like a ‘90s VHS filter. Just have a friend use their camera or phone and take a snapshot of their computer screen as you pose.

19. Recreating Childhood Photos

What better way to brighten up your family’s day than by recreating a few childhood photos? Find an old image you love, grab similar clothes (bonus if can find the same ones from the pic) and mimic the poses. The best part of the process is pairing both photos side by side and seeing the similarities immediately. Throwback Thursday, here we come.

20. Projector

A projector isn’t only good for a nice at-home movie night. Set up your projector, let it play on a blank wall and let your imagination run wild. Become part of a flick, artwork or any moveable visual you can find online.

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