There are cameras everywhere! I love being out with friends, family, or the man and capturing the moment. However, I don’t love filters. I feel filters are overdone and don’t show the true you. You are beautiful; we want to see the real you. I can relate to not feeling comfortable in front of the camera. So how can we get a picture we feel good about without filters? Here are tips I have found helpful.
Find good light. My teen daughter taught me that you have good, natural light coming in the window, face toward the window to take the picture. I will take a picture by holding my phone at different angles in the light or moving my body around in a circle to figure out the best angle to use the light. Natural light is way more flattering than the flash. Turn your flash off.
Suppose you are taking a picture outside. If possible, stand under something, so the light isn’t coming directly down on you. Natural light at an angle is more flattering. Just not coming right at your eyes where you squint, and it makes funny lines on your face.
Adjust the exposure. A filter can make the light perfect but also blur your face and distort you. You all have seen those pictures. Instead, adjust the light and shadows in your image. This makes a huge difference. If you aren’t comfortable playing with those photo settings, the edit feature on the iPhone has some preset ones.
Good Posture. Your mother was right! Shoulders back, stand, or sit straight, chin up and out and tighten your core. Don’t face the camera straight on. Put your body on an angle or slightly turn your shoulders.
Facial expression. How do you not cheese it and over-grin or look pissed off all the time? Aim for your genuine smile. In pictures of myself and my kids, I can tell when we have genuine smiles. Sometimes a smirk or partial smile also looks good. Play around and see what works for you. Can’t get it right, use the trick of faking a laugh in a picture. I’m not talking about a that’s the most fun thing you’ve ever heard, mouth wide open laughter—more of a slight giggle to yourself.
Hands and arms. Knowing what to do with your hands and arms is difficult. Do something with them! Put them playfully in your pockets, one hand in your pocket and the other down your leg, one or both hands on hips, one slightly touching your face or your partner’s face. A good tip for a more flattering picture is to put space between your body and your arms. It will better frame your body. If you don’t know what to do with your hands, use props like a coffee mug, purse, drink, umbrella, etc.
Another trick my daughter showed me is that you can use the volume buttons on the side of your iPhone to take a selfie.
Take lots. I hate when I ask someone to take a photo, and they take one and hand the camera back. If you can take a great picture in one click, wow, I’m super impressed. Either use the burst option on your phone’s camera or at least take six or so to have options. With the three kids, I have to take a dozen before I get one with everyone’s eyes open and looking in the right direction.
The best photo tip I can give you is to get in those photos! Photos don’t have to be perfect to capture a meaningful memory. Don’t always be the one hiding behind the camera taking the pictures. You are cheating others and yourself of those memories. My most treasured keepsakes of those that have passed are photos. I don’t know if they liked the picture, but I love them.