We have a saying at Pinterest HQ: Put Pinners first. The people who use Pinterest are the first thing we think of as we build our product. The same goes for the photography we use to represent our brand. We’re inspired by real Pinners and their passions and wonderful eccentricities.
Who we show
Show actual Pinners, not models: When possible, our photos should feature real people who really use Pinterest. We might show them in the middle of creative flow, or a work in progress mess. Or maybe we'll show them proudly showing off something they made, inspired by an idea they found on Pinterest.
Show a diversity of ages, genders, ethnicities and sizes: Pinterest is a tool for anyone to discover and do what they love. Our photography reflects the incredible range of all the people who use the service.
Show the kind of people you’d like to talk to at a party: The people we photograph look like they live life fully, and love who they are. They’re appealing, and not necessarily "conventionally" attractive.
Show people in their own spaces or with their own stuff: Ideally we catch Pinners in whatever setting they feel most creative, surrounded by the things that inspire them. Staged studio environments can also work, though it helps when subjects are wearing their own clothes, doing things that let their distinct personalities shine through.
How we show them
Show images that feel like a friend took them: We don’t want anything that feels stock or like it came out of a magazine. Shoot from eye level or below, and fairly close-in. This makes things feel more casual and intimate. Eye contact and authentic expressions help a lot, too.
Show breezy, casual compositions: Images should feel like captured moments, and be full of rich detail. Shoot for a mix of both asymmetrical and symmetrical shots. Asymmetry gives a more dynamic, unstaged look, and leaves us with room to add text later on. Symmetry honors the Pinner by putting them “front and center.”
Use subtle filters and slight film grain. Some judicious post-processing can help images feel more like a memory and less like a photograph.
Stuff to avoid
Please don’t show people with inauthentic expressions. We’ve found that keeping the size of the photo crew to a minimum and spending time getting to know the Pinner can help get images that feel more authentic. We don’t want to overwhelm or exhaust our subjects.
Don’t use slick photography tricks. Avoid tack sharp or pixel-perfect images, sun flares, bokeh, HDR, short depth of field, wide angle distortion, tilt-shift or other stylized choices that give off the feel of a professional photo shoot.
Don’t show intimidating perfection. The settings and people you photograph should never look overly polished, or impossibly perfect.