The Fine Art of a “Selfie”
I was recently chided by my 20 something year old children for wanting to take my own “selfie”. I was scolded that I was vain and shallow. Let me clarify. It is not that I could not have had a professional portrait made. I reside in a sea of photographic professionals who would have willingly obliged.
And don’t get me wrong there is a time and a place for a professional portrait. Linked In is among those places where a professional portrait should be required. I wanted to prove to myself that 1. I could do it. 2. I could do it and make myself look, well, not too bad. And 3. I wanted to take a photo that was completely finished in the phone ready for upload. So as my kids rolled their eyes and made ugh noises I made my way into the world of Selfiedom.
The camera on my iphone 6 is a great camera that can also take a phone call now and then. Sometimes when the phone rings I jump or when I am using it as a camera I forget where I put my phone (duh). As I played with the rear-facing camera here is a few things I learned about taking a selfie:
Watch your light. Since photography is all about the light it is no different here. Look for pleasing light that enhances the contours of your face. Turn your flash off and search for some natural light.
When I am in the studio quite often I will use a stepladder to get above my subject. This makes for a longer line from the face to the neck. So try holding your camera above you at a slight angle.
A good portrait is all about the eyes. Using the rear-facing camera it is not easy to get good expression in your eyes. It may take a bit of trial and error to have your eyes looking back at you.
For the retouch I used an app called Editor Lite. It was a free app for mac download. I ended up with two versions of my final edit because I used too much retouching and in the first version my eyes turned blue (my eyes are green). In the final version I used a very light retouch. A little under the eyes smoothing and just a tiny bit of eye brightening in the corners of my eyes.
Finally I went into Snapseed, My absolute favorite app for artistic filters. The Vintage filter provided the finishing touch for my very first successful selfie.
So go ahead and explore your selfiness. What is the worst that can happen? There is always the delete button right? And if at first you don’t succeed … try try again!