advice: self portraiture technical tips

I have been asked about my technical process for taking self portraits so decided I would do a post.  First of all I use my iPhone and have used it for the entire time I have been on Instagram.  There are days that I question if I should start using my DSLR for Instagram and maybe one day I will mix it in but for now I am still 100% iPhone on Instagram.  Here are a few technical tips for taking better self portraits, I will do a non-technical post in the near future.

Use a tripod! This first one may seem like a no brainer but it is definitely worth saying.  Get a tripod and put your phone (or camera) on it.  When you use a tripod you can frame your shot exactly as you want and do your best at straightening up lines and perspective so you will have less work later.

Blue painters tape for shots from above. When you want an angle that you can’t get alone with a tripod then it is time to turn to blue painters tape.  You can tape your phone to the ceiling and won’t ruin the paint if you use painters tape!  You can also tape your phone pretty much anywhere you want with this tape and take your picture so it is a super handy thing to have around.

Try a remote shutter. By using a remote shutter you no longer have to hit the self timer button and run to get into place. For a long time I used one I bought on Amazon for less than $10 and it worked wonderfully.  A few years ago I upgraded to the Apple Watch for my shutter and it is amazing.  You can not only see what the camera sees, allowing you to get in the exact spot you want and see how it will turn out but you can control the exposure by clicking on the darkest or lightest areas on the screen.  If you are serious about taking self portraits this is definitely something to save up for!  Also when using a remote you can get creative, you don’t have to use your finger to hit it, you can use your foot.  And on some, including the Apple Watch, you can hit a three second delay allowing you time to get in position.

Take lots of shots and move around often.  When you are not behind the camera you aren’t seeing exactly what is going on so even with the Apple Watch you are only seeing the overall composition not the details as it is too small.  The best thing to do when taking your pictures is to take a series of many and make small adjustments each time.  This way when you look at the pictures you have plenty of options.  Also I usually do one series of images, look at them to see what I do and don’t like and then set it up again and do a second series of I don’t think I got “the shot” in the first series.

I will do a series of posts over the next few weeks with advice so if you have any questions please just send me an email!





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