Bookstagrammer of the Month: Erika of @thenocturnalfey
Welcome to our new monthly special feature post, Bookstagrammer Of The Month!
Each month we will be interviewing a different Bookstagrammer (Book lover/photographer on Instagram) who will share with us a bit of their experience about the Bookstagram community!
Introducing Erika of @thenocturnalfey, YABC's Bookstagrammer of the Month!!
Erika is a self-taught freelance illustrator and virtual assistant (VA), book blogger, and bookstagrammer from the Philippines. She runs a Bookstagram and Book Blog under the same name, The Nocturnal Fey.
She believes that she was a winter fey in her past life. :p
Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Book Blog | Goodreads
1. How long have you been part of the Bookstagram community?
I started posting books on my personal account in 2014, but it's only in early 2015 when I changed my account name to the one (@thenocturnalfey) I currently have, and decided to official turn it to a bookstagram account. So basically, I'm turning 3 years.
2. Can you tell us a bit about your feed/style and how it has changed over time?
My feed started out very minimalist, but I eventually added more props and other nonsensical items on my photos to make them look livelier and more colorful. I sported out the typical white blanket background up until mid 2016, and went to the plain white background until mid 2017. Since mid June 2017, I've been using wooden table as my main background. But recently, I want to go more freestyle with my feed and not follow a certain theme or color scheme. I'm not sure how this will turn out, but I also want to go back to a more minimalist concept, but with more on the freestyle side.
Latest photo on my bookstagram
3. What is the silliest thing you've ever done for the sake of a photo?
I once went up to our apartment building's rooftop to take a photo for bookstagram (while silently hoping to capture something breathtaking). I live in a tropical country, so it's pretty hot throughout the year. And of course, there's no way that I'd go out to take a photo when the sun's down, because duh, proper lighting! So I went there before noon, when the natural lighting is the prettiest, and the sun is scorching hot. I was sweating all over my body, but of course, I didn't give up. I didn't go up just to go back down without a photo. So yeah, I still find that extremely silly, but it's probably nothing compared to other bookstagrammers' stories. Haha
Ps, it still has my old username. lol
4. When do you make time for taking photos? Do you usually plan ahead or take photos as you go (daily)?
When I started bookstagram, I used to take photos daily. That time, I was also still using my phone to take photos so it's a lot easier to shoot-and-post. Then, I switched to a nicer camera, so that's when I realized that taking photos daily is not really good for me. Lol. I started out scheduling my photoshoots, usually on weekends.
5. What type of camera do you use?
I alternately use Canon G7x and Nikon D5100.
6. What are some of your favorite props (besides books, of course ;) )?
My bookish merch such as bookmarks or swags. Flowers, butterflies, and my art materials or artworks.
7. Which of your photos is your absolute favorite and why?
This is extremely hard! I guess, my recent favorite is the book tower below. I don't know, I just love it. I rarely do shoots that involve lots of books in one photo, and I haven't really posted a book tower until this photo. So, maybe it's kinda fulfilling in a way? Plus, it's super tiring to set-up, and I loved how it turned out.
8. What is the thing you love most about Bookstagramming?
Definitely the people, and their creativity. It amazes me every time! People of bookstagram are so hardworking and creative, and really friendly. This includes the authors. I get to talk to some of my favorite authors, thanks to bookstagram.
9. What are a few of your favorite Bookstagram accounts?
I'm currently following 1000+ accounts on my bookstagram, and if I can list all those accounts down, I'd do it. Lol. Here are my most favorite ones:
@cfeecup @novelheartbeat @nerdytalksbookblog @thereaderandthechef @darkfaerietales_ @xenatine @thebookishhowler @myfriendsarefiction and moooooore!!!
10. Do you have any tips for new Bookstagram accounts that you wish you knew when you started?
Last year, I wrote down 10 Bookstagram Tips for Starters on my blog. I'm not a pro- photographer, so any tips from me on the technical aspects of bookstagramming are just based on my own observations. This includes getting proper lighting, and using good camera, or editing tools (optional).
When I first started bookstagram, I used to get so stressed out because I don't think I'm getting enough likes and followers. It felt like my photos are underappreciated, or that maybe people don't like them. This led me to deleting some photos that I already posted, to changing my theme according to what's trending even if it's not my forte. Which then eventually turned out to be more damaging for my well-being as a bookstagrammer because I was no longer happy. At some point, I took bookstagram as some sort of an obligation instead of just something that I used to do for fun, and/or an outlet for creativity and love for books.
Maybe, today's bookstagrammer-me's best tip would be just to have fun, and do whatever you want to do with your account at your own accord. Don't get too focused on likes and followers alone, but focus more on the fun, creativity, the people you interact with, and your main goal and objective as to why you joined the Bookstagram community.
Thank you again for stopping by YABC, Erika! We absolutely love your account (and your pretty art!) and we cannot wait to see more of your beautiful photos on #bookstagram!