Monday, December 8, 2008

To Be or Not To Be - Photogenic - That is!!

I’m always trying to figure out why I don’t look the same in a photograph as I do in a mirror. I have never liked being the subject in pictures. I am always the one in control of the camera because I’m not very photogenic. As I’ve stated before I have to get pictures ready for Aunt Laurie for Christmas, and that includes some of me. So today I spent several hours searching for the answer and came up with several reasons. The most popular was, we don’t see ourselves in pictures the same as we see ourselves in the mirror.

How on earth do you take a good picture? Naturally, a lot will depends on the photographer, but the model or person in question has some control, too. I’m sure you have noticed that some people - even those not that are un attractive in real life - turn out better in photographs than others. So what the heck is the secret?

There is nothing mystical about it. Photogenic people enjoy having their picture taken, and know how to be relaxed & happy when the camera is exposed. If you have ever noticed they have a natural reaction and will do things to make themselves look better! This is me, if you’re used to having bad pictures taken of yourself, you probably get nervous and shy in front of the camera. The awesome part is that because it’s a skill, it can be learned!

A photograph is a frozen moment in time, a two-dimensional image of you from one angle. The bad thing is that it won’t show all your good attributes like we see them with the human eyes. The best thing is, tricking the camera is easy, by hiding the features you’re not fond of. Listed are some tips to help you take better, nicer, and prettier pictures:

Pile on extra makeup:

The camera tends to ‘swallow’ makeup like crazy, so pile it on and blend well. Putting on a foundation is an absolute necessary, more so now than ever before, in the age of digital cameras that pick up every imperfection. It is recommend wearing mascara and at least a lip gloss or appealing shade of lipstick, even if it’s only a casual shot. Eyeliner would be an awesome addition because it helps define your eyes - without it, features can often get lost. Don’t forget the blush or bronzer - the camera has a tendency to wash the colors out and you don’t want to end up with a dull pancake look on your face.

Pick an outfit you fell good in & practice posing in it:

Don’t just throw something on that you assume will look good; feel and know what looks good by trying on the outfit beforehand and testing the waters. Practice modeling different poses in front of the mirror and decide the dos and don’ts of the outfit. Make note of any problems with the outfit, like a folded hem , unwanted wrinkle or crease etc.

Techniques to slim yourself down:

There are ways to trick the eye of the camera into thinking you’re slimmer or thinner than you really are. This has nothing to do with your actual weight; but something you can do for your advantage in more flattering poses. By the way, most professional models employ these techniques as well. Turn your body 3/4 to the camera. Behold, you just reduced your weight by a third! Shift weight to one foot – make sure it’s the leg that’s furthest away from the camera. Do you have any ‘problem areas’ you’re insecure with (hips, tummy)? Hide them with your hands, props or clothing. Sucking in your tummy! This is the easiest thing to forget when you’re posing, so ask the photographer (or a friend) to kindly remind you during the shoot. Stretching every single bone in your body will instantly make you look taller, slimmer and more confident! When stretching your neck, tilt the chin down a little bit to avoid the up-the-nose shots. Wearing heels will elongate your legs look and force you to carry yourself in a different, more confident way. For full-body shots, tell the photographer to shoot from the belly-button level. That means wherever your belly button is, that’s where the camera should be. This elongates your legs and improves your proportions.

Some Other tricks:

Face towards the light source. Facing away from the light can cause unflattering shadows. Lean ever so slightly towards the camera. Doing so adds interest, dimension and a more natural look to a photo. Use props whenever possible! Anything - a hat, a book, an apple! Having something to focus on and interact with will help you to be more relaxed and make for more interesting pictures. Imagine the photographer is someone you are extremely attracted to! By doing this it will bring out the natural lively flirt in you and light up your face with a smile.
Never ever forget getting your picture taken can be a fun and exciting experience. It was much easier when we didn’t have digital cameras, and couldn’t criticize every single picture we took. Never expect every single shot to be a masterpiece - even the best photographers out there usually get a few to a dozen keepers out of 100 images taken. Have fun and don’t be too critical of yourself, and your photos will turn out splendid!


Anonymous said...

Some great pointers. I hate having my picture taken and always have. Nice post.

Genna said...

Thanks for the hints. I HATE my pictures and I am one of those people that cannot keep my eyes open so I always look like I am asleep.

Anonymous said...

Agreed great points to remember. My pictures are always hit and miss.

Terri said...

I hate having my picture taken, but these are some good tips Imight just try!! Thanks

lili11 said...

Nice tips. Also, don't forget the other beauty which is more important - the inner beauty.

Missy said...

Great tips.