What a love-hate relationship we have with that camera! It’s terrifying to stare at that lens and MORE terrifying to see the end result.
Then, there’s a great picture staring back at you and you’re like “yay!”
And, it always feels like some magical intervention has occurred. You take ten pics and one – maybe one – is good. Why is that?
Well, I don’t know. But whether you’re doing the selfie, or someone is acting as photographer, there are a few very simple things you can do to show your most gorgeous you.
Tip Number 1: It seems to be – even for the professionals – that a large number of pictures are required to get a few good ones. Remember senior pictures? Yeah, they take like 50 pictures. The ratio is about 10 to 1. Anticipate taking 10 pics to get 1 good pic.
Similarly – Tip Number 2: Don’t think the one you kinda-sorta like or the one that “isn’t awful” will be acceptable for the duration. It won’t. You’ll regret that decision. Keep clicking till you get one you like.
Tip Number 3: Lighting is everything. I cannot express this enough! Bad lighting makes anybody look horrid. Any harsh, directional light (especially overhead) will create shadows on the face and make you tired – and older. This is particularly true if you’re over 35. Or 40. Or 50.
Avoid overhead lighting like the plague. You need abundant ambient lighting all around your face. THAT is the best lighting for a good pic. Turn on the lights – all of them! Have them all around you. Photo studios do that and use reflectors to really spread that light around. There’s a reason for that.
Tip Number 4: Wear your favorite clothes. Feel pretty as possible. Take the time to do the hair and the face. Feel your best.
Tip Number 5: Look up. Hold the camera at ~30-40 degree angle upward from your face, forcing yourself to look up at the camera. This angle will reduce facial lines, make your eyes wider and minimize any under the chin “baggage”.
Tip Number 6: Think happy. Vacation… winning the lottery… a chocolate cake… a Gucci bag. Whatever does it for you – think about it! It will make your smile more natural.
Tip Number 7: Consider the background. There’s nothing worse than a great pic with a toilet or some other goofy thing in plain view. Pick a neutral or lovely setting and click away!
Tip Number 8: Baby, it just ain’t your day. There are times when the good pic is just not possible. Maybe you’re coming down with something, or tired, or preoccupied… it’s all good. It’s a picture. It will wait for another day.
These are just a few things that I’ve discovered/tried over the years that have been very effective – with both selfies and “regular” pictures. I hope you find them useful, too!