Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Vanity Vanity + The Art of the Selfie

I take a ridiculous amount of pictures of myself and have pretty much perfected the art of the selfie. Actually, I've been doing it for years, before social media gave it a name you could find me turning the camera on myself (or me + my girls) , arm angled just so with the right amount of head tilt. But you had to be careful, too much angle on the arm and you're all up your nose. Not enough head tilt and your face gets cut off. Bummer.
No, I'm a HUGE proponent of the selfie. I tend to think it's more empowering than anything. I know they get a bad rap. I've received several looks and rolled eyes over the years whenever I busted out my camera and turned the lens back to me but you know what? Haters gonna hate.
I started taking them really as a way to document how I looked and felt in those moments. Some were on birthdays and special occasions others were just simply because I liked my makeup and wanted to document it for posterity. And let's be honest, sometimes those old photos come in handy for #throwbackthursday .
In all seriousness, the 'selfie' has become a new "thing" to mock or ridicule simply because some see it as vanity or think they are better than anyone else somehow. Can't a girl just want a photo cuz she likes her dress?  I mean, what better way to document your personal style evolution and to really see what works and what doesn't? (note to self: red hair looks damn good on you)  I've found it's a great way to document where I'm at in life and what my style is as well as how clothes really look on. Whenever I try on clothes I always take a photo so I can see how it really looks and also how it would photograph. I love looking back on old photos and seeing how far I've come, what ridiculous trends I rocked, and how young my girlfriends and I looked at the time.

With the advent of Instagram selfie's are definitely on the rise and even though 'others' still give side eye about them I love it. Nothing better than a woman who is feeling so good about how she looks right then and there that she is compelled to snap a photo. But ,the whole #filterforwhat #nofilterneeded hashtags are killing all the fun of it. Can we stop shaming each other ladies? I totally use filters on my selfie's and you know why? Sometimes the lighting is shitty or the colors aren't popping in the photo the way they do in real life so why not bump them up a notch? It's Instagram for cryin in the corn! Using filters is the point!
But I digress - since I am the queen of the selfie's in our group I thought I'd share some tips on taking them and how to get the best results.
Selfie 101:

1) Give face: No duck faces. Unless you're a teenager or college student there is no reason to make this face. It's part of the reason selfie's have such a bad rap. Just smile or smirk. No need for crazy face. Unless that is who you are. Then by all means : go crazy


2) Angles:  You can easily lose an arm or a leg if you're standing in an awkward position when you take your photo. But you don't necessarily want to stand dead on either. Years of watching ANTM has taught me that your body should be 'broken' to create interesting lines and content. So get out there and bend it like Beckham. Victoria that is.


3) Filter Away: Part of the fun of Insta is the use of the many different filters and editing options. I say use as many as you like but  don't get crazy and if you choose to go au naturale don't hashtag #nofilterneeded - that's like shaming the rest of who do. And besides - that is a matter of opinion. Obviously don't filter away your entire self but hey a little Earlybird never hurt anybody right?


clearly I filtered the hell out of this as her hair is not that opaque
4) Location : Please ladies, for the love of all things selfie, stop taking photos in your bathroom at night! The lighting is harsh the angles are bad and unless you just remodeled no one is that interested in that room. Lucky for me the whole back wall of my dining room/kitchen is mirrored which is great as I've learned the lighting in our bedroom sucks.

 


However, I'm not above the bathroom shot (particularly in restaurants- see above) and I'm totally guilty of breaking my own rules (see examples below) but let's just try to have all our clothes on shall we? I'm also fond of a HomeGoods mirror aisle as well as my local Target. But be ware the photo bomber.

 

5) Who's zooming who: That crop feauture can be great when you need to get a tight shot or edit some photo bomber but let's use it wisely hmm? The selfie is a delicate photo and it can be quite shocking to scroll your feed and just stumble upon someone's grill all up in the camera. If I can see your pores - it's too close.


Most importantly have fun with it. It's a self portrait of you in a moment in time. Enjoy the moment!
Follow me on Instagram for more selfie fun!! 



How do you feel about the selfie? Do you think it's vain or empowering?


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