This isn’t how to take a flattering picture of yourself, these days we all get invited to a lot of events, nights out, and get photographed whether we like it or not. These photos inevitably end on social networking sites. It is a time of panic for many of us. You can’t exactly grab the camera, hold it several centimetres above you and say, “Lemme show you how it’s done, sunshine”. While this would probably give you points for audacity, it would leave a pretty unpleasant taste in most people’s mouths.
So here are my tips! Here’s how to make the most of a paparazzi moment.
Work out your best angle. Most photographers will take photos at eye-level, meaning you’re going to get a straight-on kind of shot. (If they try to take it from below, either tell them to take it higher up or not to bother — no one looks good from that angle.) Don’t just look straight at the camera. You’ll end up with a mugshot, and even Frank Sinatra couldn’t make that look good. This may mean a bit of bedroom practising. How much do you need to twist your neck to make the most of those lovely cheekbones?
Lift your head slightly. Not too much, since it makes the photograph very “chinny”, if you know what I mean. There’s also the risk of a picture which looks more like “A Thorough Investigation Of Jane’s Nasal Cavity” than “Jane Brouhaha ad friend”. The point of lifting your head is to elongate the neck ad improve your posture. It also helps avoid the whole double-chin scenario.
Yes, posture. Stand up straight! Curved shoulders and a generally troll-like disposition are very unattractive. You should be standing up straight all the time, but I know it can be hard to remember, especially if it wasn’t drilled into you early. Imagine there is a string coming up from the top of your head which is attached to a cloud way up above your body. Then act accordingly.
Put down anything you’re holding. Take off bags, put down cellphones/drinks/chihuahuas, and if a coat is slung over your arm, give it to someone else to hold for the time being. The reason for this is that all these accoutrements are a distraction from what should be a glorious photograph of YOU! Not Grey Goose vodka or iphone or small dog. The other thing to keep in mind is that when you looked in the mirror before leaving the house, you didn’t have any of this junk. It was just you in a daringly stylish outfit. You want to preserve that as an image if you can. Bags throw us off balance, make us lopsided, pull on necklines and in a really bad photograph, add weird black unidentifiable blobs to our stomachs or chests.
Just smile! I know it sounds simple, and it is. But it works. Of course, make sure you’re doing the right smile. Some people have gnarly teeth which make even the tenderest grin look painful, while sometimes the closed-lip smile conjures up images of a mouth full of cotton wool, or a nervous, frigid woman. (EVEN if you are a man!) So get your smile right in the mirror before hitting the red carpet.
Hold your arms slightly away from your body. This will make you look much smaller, believe me. Put your hands on your hips for best effect.
Be confident! Even if the photograph kind of sucks, at least if you’re smiling or look like you’re having a good time, you’ll be much happier with the end result.
Strike a pose!
(All images sources available by clicking on the picture themselves)