Eek, that's so not good

Eek, that's so not good

Creepy underlight, a giant arm, and flare on my glasses. Ugh.

Creepy underlight, a giant arm, and flare on my glasses. Ugh.

Ah, much better.

Ah, much better.

Better Selfies in less than a minute!

Selfies are fun. Bad selfies are not what you want hanging around the interwebs.  Here are some easy tips to taking better self portraits.  The three pictures above were taken with me standing in the exact same spot in my dining room.  I was standing in front of a bright window with white sheers.  In the left shot, I held the camera with one hand and took the picture with the other. In the center pic, I held the camera over my head and you can see what awful things happened with the light.  In the third picture, I followed the steps below.  (On all three images, I clicked "auto enhance" on my iPhone).

1) Don't take the picture from up above your head.  I know, I know, lots of people take the high-above-selfie, but there is a much better way.  The reason people shoot from above is because it can define the jawline, make the eyes look bigger and minimize the rest of you.  HOWEVER, it can also look really unflattering. You end up seeing the floor in the background, the light on the face can come from underneath, making you look ghoulish (like the rotten pictures up above).  Psychologically, when you look down on someone, you are diminishing them as a person, making them feel small and insignificant.  (Never allow someone to take your business profile shot looking down upon you, or you'll never get the job!)

Here's the trick to doing it right: Hold your camera at eye height, but put your weight AWAY from the camera and stretch your forehead towards the camera. You get the same exact effect as holding the camera above, without the bad lighting or flooring backdrop.

(Another little tip is that the high above shot looks terrible with very thin people because it makes them look like a lollipop with a huge head and stick body).

Lighting Matters a Lot

2) Stand in good light.  It's a selfie, you can take the picture from wherever you like! Stand with a window in front of you, or in bright open shade, or so pretty light falls on your face.  Soft, diffused light is flattering on most faces, so move to an area that doesn't have a lot of harsh light or dark shadows. This is an easy fix and can often be a matter of changing your angle slightly.  I took the shots above when standing in front of a window with white sheers.

3) Hold the camera as far away from your face as you can reach.  The closer the camera is to you, the more distorted your features will seem.  Holding the camera farther will help to normalize your features and it will look more flattering.

Best Poses for a Great Selfie

4) Drop your shoulder. When you take a selfie, your shoulder naturally wants to move up by your ear.  Dropping the shoulder allows you to have a more flattering pose and it is more slimming as well.  No one looks good with their shoulder up by their ear.  This will also allow you to crop more of your arm out of the photo. The less you see of your arm holding the camera, the better.  You might even consider cropping the long arm out of the shot, which I did in the picture above on the right.

5) Turn your body so it's at a 45-degree angle to the camera.  That slight turn away from camera will flatter your body and accentuate curves in the right places. Standing flat to camera will widen your figure.

Try these tips the next time you're in selfie-mode!

 

 

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