In the age of Social Media everyone is posting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and all the other emerging Social Networks. From celebrities like Kim K and Rihanna to everyday regular people like me … The year 2013 was the year of the selfie. And it doesn't look like selfies will be going away anytime soon as Yahoo estimates that 800 billion photos will be taken in 2014. Yup, you read that right … Billions!
So how do you take an awesome selfie? With most smart phones having the flip-the-camera-to-the-front thingy, it has become much easier but here's some awesome tips to get the best self portrait ever.
1. Gotta Look Good
If you're just rolling out of bed and still have the sleepies in your eyes and a pillow pattern indented in your forehead, it's probably not the best time to take a selfie. Make sure you look decent. Comb your hair, put on some make up and check yourself out. You can obviously always retake the picture if you see that your hair is out of place or if your lipstick is smeared all over your face but why waste the time, get it right the first time.
2. Think Background
We've all seen the selfies where you don't even care about the person in it as the background is just so much more interesting … dirty laundry, empty alcohol bottles, yucky toilets, messy rooms. All of these will kill your shot, and I don't mean “killin 'it”, as in a good way. What's behind you? How will it effect the picture? A good background can make or break a professional portrait and same goes for selfies so check what's behind you and go for solid colors, cool textures and patterns, blurred city or landscape scenes or anything else that's fun and interesting but not cluttered. You want to pop of the background, not get lost in it.
3. Lights, Camera, Action
Lighting is everything in photography. Make sure you are well lit but at the same time avoid harsh lighting that will leave shadows on your face. Try using natural light such as light coming through a window or taking a photo outdoors on a overcast day where the cloud will act like a huge, awesome diffuser in the sky making your features appear softer and more attractive while still being well lit.
4. Filter It
Every portrait, wedding photo or anything you see in a magazine has been retouched and edited. So don't be afraid to get creative and throw a filter on it. There's tons of apps and editing software out there so use them! Filters can make your photo more interesting, make you look better and in general are awesome. Just don't over kill it! Hiding a blemish or cropping something out of the picture is cool but smoothing out your face to the point where it looks like Barbie with botox overdose is a no-no.
5. The Right Angle
Avoid unflattering angles. Taking a photo from above will usually do the trick. If you ever had a professional portrait taken, you might have had the photographer tell you to stick your chin out to avoid the double chin. What you really want to do is stick your forehead and chin forward. It might feel weird and uncomfortable but it will stretch the skin on your face and neck hiding the pudginess and the dreaded double chin. You also want to squint your eyes a little bit. And by a little bit I mean a little bit, you don't want to look like you're straining to see something. Ever hear the famous Tyra Banks phrase “smizing”? That's exactly what you want to do … Smile with your eyes.
6. Silly Duck
Out of all the above tips, this one is the most important one. HAVE FUN! Be silly, be goofy and have fun with it. Scratch off all of the above tips and just have a blast with it. Do a crazy duck face, stick your tongue out, put on a fake mustache, be cute. BE IN THE MOMENT! That is what the selfie is all about after all, capturing an awesome moment in time and sharing it with the world. So don't take yourself too seriously and go out there and show your best selfie!
7. If All Fails
Just call your local portrait photographer (like me) and invest in a portrait session that you'll cherish and remember for ever … awwwww! 😉