How to Take a Good Selfie
How to Take a Good Selfie published by The 1st Amender
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Posted on 2016-11-29
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This article was written by a user on wikihow. You can read the original here: http://www.wikihow.com/Take-Good-Selfies
Striking a Pose
1Capture a good angle. Instead of taking the picture head-on, experiment with different angles to show off your features. If you turn your head a few degrees to the right or left, your features will appear less flat. Holding the camera slightly higher than your head so that it's pointing down on you will make your eyes look bigger and help you avoid "pig nose." Here are a few other ideas for finding a good angle:
- Know your "good side" and take the photo from that side of your face. It's the side of your face that looks the most balanced and symmetrical.
- Angling the camera slightly above yourself and taking a snapshot of your face and chest will highlight your cleavage. Since this position is fairly unnatural, odds are, you already know what the camera will focus on when you take a selfie like this.
Show off something new. If you decide to take a selfie to show off a new haircut or a new pair of earrings, make sure that you frame the photo in a way that highlights the new feature that has you so excited.
3Be sure to smile or do something cheerful. A sad face or a frown will not help.
- A selfie showing off your new hairstyle, for example, should show your hair from the most flattering angle. On a similar note, a selfie showing off a mustache should show the mustache straight-on, and the same goes for a selfie showing off a new pair of glasses.
- You could also take a selfie holding a new item you just bought, or even a food item you're about to eat.
4Focus on one feature. If you're planning on doing a closeup of your face, consider glamming up one feature while downplaying the others. This works especially well if there is one feature that you are especially pleased with.
- For instance, if you love your eyes, play them up with mascara and complementary eye shadow while keeping your complexion and lips fairly natural.
- Likewise, if your smile is your most charming feature, keep your cheeks and eyes looking natural while donning a stunningly beautiful lipstick.
5Have an interesting expression. You can't go wrong with smiling! Maybe smiling for the camera—or camera phone, as the case might be—makes you feel a little silly, but taking a random photo of yourself with your phone is a silly enough action in itself. If you're on the serious side, a cool, collected expression could also go over well.
- You can play around with different smiles, of course. A closed-mouth coy smile can be just as appropriate and just as flattering as a wide, laughing grin. No matter what, a smile is one of the most appreciated and charming expressions you can wear.
- It can be hard to make sure your expression looks authentic. One way to make it look more real is to try to capture yourself when you're feeling an emotion. Try taking a selfie while you're watching a movie that's making you genuinely laugh, or right after you find out some shocking news.
6Take a full-length photo. If you want to show off a great new outfit or a fabulous figure after a diet, you will need to stand in front of a full-length mirror to capture your body from head to toe. In this instance, your face is no longer the focus of the photo.
- Take full body shots in a clutter-free space. The photo should focus completely on your figure, not on random objects in the background.
- You can appear more slender by slightly cocking your hip to the same side you are holding your camera in. Your opposite shoulder should come forward a bit, and your free arm should either dangle to your side or your free hand can rest on your hip. The chest should lean forward naturally, and the legs should be crossed at the ankle.
7Try a natural look. Do not add too many filters at a time. You can take a picture of yourself as the outside world always sees you, but taking a snapshot of yourself with bedhead or minimal makeup can give the illusion that you're giving your social media followers a glimpse at the “real you.” This can be both interesting and sexy.
- If your just-out-of-bed look is more of a nightmare than a dream, however, you can straighten up a little. Even light makeup can give the impression that you are showing your “natural” face, especially if you tend to wear much more makeup than what you put on for your selfie.
8Snap a photo of your shoes. If you decide to take a selfie of your feet after you slip on a great new pair of shoes, angle the camera so that your leg appears slender as it leads up to your foot.
- Aim the camera straight down. The edge of the frame should land somewhere on your thighs, fairly close to your hips. This angle makes your legs look as long as possible.
9Know which poses are considered passé. There are certain selfie poses that became wildly popular and are now well past their prime. You can still contribute your own examples to the mix, but do it with a little self-awareness so people know you're in on the joke. Notable choices include the infamous "duck face," muscle flexing, pretending to be asleep, or pretending to be caught off guard by someone else.
- The duck face is a combination of puckered lips and wide eyes, originally made famous by Snookie and friends. Do it at your own risk!
- Taking a selfie and pretending that someone else took it is hard to pull off. There will be some clue in your posture or actions that will give you away and open you up to criticism. If you do it with a slight smile or a wink, people will realize it's an intentional setup.
Setting the Scene for Even Better Selfies
1Pay attention to good lighting. Having a solid light source is an essential part of taking any kind of photograph, and selfies are no different. If you try to take a selfie in a dimly-lit room or one with harsh fluorescent lighting, it won't turn out the way you want it to. Natural light is the most flattering kind, so try to take your selfie near a window or outdoors. Keep these factors in mind when you shoot:
- Keep the sun or other light source in front of you, a bit above eye level, for the most flattering shot. The light will brighten and soften your features, rather than casting harsh shadows across your face. If it's off to the side or behind you, your features could appear shadowy or distorted.
- Consider using a thin curtain to diffuse sunlight or a single light source. It makes the light softer and more flattering. It will give the impression of smoother, softer facial lines so that your smile appears more attractive.
- Natural light renders colors more faithfully than artificial light, but you can use artificial light to fill shadows. If you don't have the best lighting, most modern digital cameras have some automatic color correction to make up for it.
- Don't use your flash if you can help it. It'll create a forehead glare, distort your appearance and possibly give your selfie the redeye effect.
Use your phone's back camera. Many cell phones have two cameras: one in the back, and one in the front. Instead of using the camera in the front to take selfies, use the one in the back. The back camera takes higher-resolution pictures than the front camera, which will end up taking a blurrier selfie. You'll have to turn the phone around, and you won't be able to see your face as you take the picture, but it's worth the trouble to use the back camera.
3Don't use a mirror unless there's no other way to get the shot you want. The picture will appear in reverse, your camera will be visible, and you're likely to end up with a strange glare. Plus, your selfie could appear distorted, since mirror glass doesn't always reflect back a perfectly accurate image. Stretch out your arm, use your wrist to point the camera toward your face, and snap away. It might take some practice to get it right, but eventually you'll know exactly where to position the camera to make sure it captures your whole face (and never cuts off the top of your head).
- The exception would be if you want to take a full-body selfie, since it can be hard to capture more than your head and shoulders without using a mirror.
- Practice using both your right and left hand to take selfies. See which one allows you to get the angles you want.
4Consider the background of your picture. The best selfies have more than just a face. There's something interesting to look at in the background, too. Whether you take your selfie inside or outdoors, check around you first to see what's going on in the background. Position yourself so that you're in front of the background you want people to see.
- Nature always makes a great background. In the spring and summer, you can pose in a small wooded area or near a blossoming bush of flowers if you need a quick and easy backdrop. For fall, capture the color of the changing leaves in the background, and in winter, capture the majesty of ice and snow.
- If nature is not your thing, you could stay indoors and take a selfie in your room. Tidy things up first, though. You could also display something interesting in the background as long as it is not distracting. For instance, if you love to read, then a bookcase or stack of books would be a good backdrop. A movie poster with a lot of different people on it could be distracting, however.
5Watch out for photo-bombers. The standard culprits include younger siblings, crying children, and dogs taking a bathroom break on the lawn behind you. Before you snap your selfie, take a quick look around to make sure that no one and nothing is lurking in the shadows, waiting to ruin your moment.
- Of course, if a photo-bomber still manages to sneak into your selfie, you can always retake the photo after the intrusion leaves. Just make sure to check the background thoroughly before you upload your newest selfie.
- Sometimes photo-bombers actually add to the selfie! Don't discount a picture just because it has your little sister in it. Her goofy face juxtaposed with your serious one could make it that much more interesting a picture.
- If you do not want to re-take your selfie, you can always remove the photo-bomber using an image manipulation program, or just crop your image using your smartphone's built-in image editing features.
6Grab a few more people to be in the photo. The first requirement of a selfie is that you have be in it, but there's no rule that says you have to be alone! Grab some friends, siblings, your dog, and other people to take a picture with you. The picture won't be as controlled, but it'll be visually interesting and fun for other people to look at and share.
- This is a good way to take a selfie in public if you're self-conscious about taking a picture of just yourself.
- The more people in the picture, the better when it comes to sharing! If you have a group of friends instead of just one or two, the picture is likely to get passed around and liked by more people.
Uploading and Managing Your Selfies
1Experiment with filters. Most people who take selfies also happen to have an app on their phones that can add interesting dimension through the use of color and light filters. Not every filter is right for every selfie, so play around with different options before settling on the best one.
- The simplest filters are “black and white” and “sepia." Even if you don't have an app installed on your phone, you probably have these features.
- Other popular filters include those that make the photo look vintage, creepy, romantic, or darker. Feel free to test them all out and see which ones go best with your photo.
2Edit the photo. If you have photo editing software, you can also touch up any blemishes or flaws on the selfie before uploading it to a social media account. You can cut out parts of the background, resize the photo so it frames your face differently, change the way the light looks, and so on. Many of these edits can be made on your phone without using an app, but you might want to look into the dozens of apps available for this purpose.
- That said, you should use photo editing sparingly. If you cannot make your edits look completely natural, err on the side of caution and delete the changes rather than posting an obvious fake.
3Upload it to all your feeds. Share your selfie on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram for all your friends to see. In most cases you can add a caption to describe what's happening in the picture, but you might want to just let it speak for itself.
- When you upload a selfie, own it! Pretending that you were taking a picture of something else and your face just happened to be there, won't fool anyone, so be proud to show off your lovely face.
- Be aware that some people find selfies annoying, and you might draw some negative comments. If your online albums end up full of selfies, you might want to consider diversifying.
- Be sure to leave the types of comments you want to see on other people's selfies. The more "likes" and shares you give others, the more you'll get.
4Get in on trends. Selfies have really taken off in the past few years, and it's fun to participate in selfie-related trends. What selfie trends are filling up your feed? Don't be shy about uploading some pictures of your own, too. Here are a few popular ones:
- Throwback Thursdays: Every Thursday, people post pictures of themselves from an earlier time. See if you can dig up a selfie from childhood, or simply post one from last week!
- From Where I Stand: This hashtag was created by people who wanted to share poignant shots from their own perspectives. Take a picture of your feet as you stand in a country you're visiting for the first time, on the beach, on a cracked city sidewalk or anywhere else you want to share.
- Feminist Selfie: This hashtag started trending on Twitter and really took off. It's about being proud to post your picture even if you aren't stereotypically gorgeous. Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.
- Hair Smile: This one's all about showing off your hair. If you consider it to be your greatest asset, take a selfie featuring your hair instead of your smile.
5Make sure the setting is appropriate. There are some places that should be completely off-limits to selfies, like funerals or the scene of an accident. Most situations like this are pretty common sense, but as a general rule, ask yourself if taking a selfie in a given situation could upset or offend people who see it. If the answer is “yes," save your selfie for another time.
- Funerals, weddings, and other major occasions are off limits. If you are at an event meant to focus on or celebrate another human being, put down your smart phone and step out of the limelight.
- Similarly, if you are at a memorial site, keep the phone in your pocket. Don't take selfies at a memorial or statue, especially if a tragic event took place there once before.
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