5 Tips to Make the Camera Love You.

The very photogenic Agne

I got a great question this week on the Facebook page from Tracy. She wanted to know if I had any tips for making a person more photogenic?

Instead of trying to put together my answer in a Facebook Post I thought I’d answer it here on the blog so we all call learn how to look pretty.  These tips are great if you are getting headshots done for your profile, at an event or anytime a camera is pointed in your direction.

1.Relax.  

The first thing that you have to do is to try to relax.  If your not relaxed then you are going to look uncomfortable and awkward and ultimately you’ll be unhappy with your photo.  I realize that this is easier said than done but it does get easier with practice so the more opportunities you get to get your photo taken  – do it!   This might mean hiring your kid to do a photoshoot with you in the back yard until you perfect your posing :)

 

2. Make Up.

Don’t underestimate the power of a little blush and a little lipstick.  The camera tends to show up more of our flaws so do your best to cover them up before getting in front of the camera.  A tad more make up than you’re usually comfortable with is probably the right amount.   A little retouching afterwards can help too but it’s always better to look great from the get go.  This will help your confidence and hence help you to relax also.

 

3.Elevate

If possible, try to get the photographer to take your picture from a slightly elevated position looking down on you.  Grab a step ladder or a stool and get the photographer to shoot you from above as you look up into the camera.  This   is a very flattering angle for most people.  It helps to elongate the neck and get rid of any extra double chins and gives an overall feeling of “lift” to the image.

 

4. Angle.

Turn your body at an angle to the camera.  This is so much more flattering than standing straight on towards the camera –  mugshot style.

 

5. Smile!

I guarantee you you wll look better if you smile at the camera.  It doesn’t have to be a cheesy grin just try to smile with your eyes and look into the lens of the camera as if it is the eyes of the person you are talking to. The end result will be a much better connection between you, the camera and the viewer of the image.

So take a deep breath, relax and Bonus Tip Number 6. – Don’t say cheese say lollies:) !

 

Happy Snapping

 

 

P.S. Thinking of taking up a camera class this Fall?  Check out my Master your DSLR – Photography 101 and learn from the comfort of your own home.

Taking Better Food Photos

It’s hot in Georgia during August.  Too hot to be slaving over a hot stove and that’s for sure.  That’s one of the reasons why we’ve been firing up the grill so much over the last few weeks.  My hubby is a real “Grill Meister” and loves to cook out.  Suits me too as all I have to worry about are the veggies which lately have been mostly salad straight from the garden – I know, I know, I’m turning granola.

Anyways, as usual I have to incorporate photography into everyday actives and last night’s dinner provided me with a great opportunity to shoot for my new upcoming course Better Blog Photos.  So while Sam was slaving away over a hot grill I was setting up some great food shots.

We also seized the opportunity to try out some awesome chicken from Zaycon foods.  You can see from the pics this really was some of the freshest and tastiest chicken I’ve ever eaten.  And Yes… of course Sam’s grilling technique played a part of it too :)

Lighting

Like I’ve said many times before photography is all about good lighting and food photography is no different. One of the biggest mistakes for shooting food photography I see most people make is shooting with the flash on.  This results in flat images such as this:

Food Photography 1

Food is a still object and therefore it’s easier to capture without the use of flash so I suggest turning your flash off and just using whatever light you have available to you.  Remember that in order to be successful doing this you also need to hold your camera super steady or ideally use a tripod.

  Food Photography 2

Already the picture is looking more appetizing and it’s only veggies :)

 

White Balance

Now we see that the next issue that we have is that the color isn’t exactly right.

Food Photography 3

The lights that most people have in their kitchen, although bright  may give your photo an artificial color cast.  This can be corrected in your camera by adjusting the White Balance setting.

White Balance

Look for the WB icon in your camera menu and consult your manual to see what the different icons mean.  Change it until you get a more natural light effect.

 

Composition

Now that the settings are a little better I can think about composition a little more.

Rather than hovering above the food, lower your camera and take a closer shot from a lower angle.

Food Photography 5

Now I’m getting hungry!

Just by doing those 3 simple things –

1. turning off my flash

2. adjusting the White Balance setting

3. lowering my angle of view

I’ve improved my shot dramatically.  Give it a try for your next foodie pics.

If you’d like to try out  Zaycon food’s convenient food service,  save some bucks as well as experience great food like the chicken above, you can check out their site here to find out more information.  They have a pretty unique concept going on and it’s a great money saver.

If you’d like more detailed information on how to take better photos like this then watch out for my new course “Better Blog Photos” coming this Fall.

 

Happy Snapping