Monday, September 15, 2008

259/366 Haircuts, originally uploaded by Amberture.

The attentive of you will notice I've a new haircut - no need to ask, it's really a haircut.

And for details, at the public request of Beyond Megapixels:
I take a lot of bathroom mirror self-portraits because they're relatively easy, quick, I can check my pose before I expose, and because there's normally lots of light. The last two points are the most key to bathroom mirror self-portraits, if I will allow myself to claim a bit of experience in this area. So I will explain both:

  • The light. An ideal bathroom self-portrait has a light directly above the mirror that points down enough to provide plenty of light bathing your face. You might have to put your face way up close to the mirror in order to achieve maximum lightness. This serves to throw the background into relative darkness and highlight your features, which should be the point. The best mirror self-portraits I ever took were in a studio theatre's bathroom which beauty lights on either side but I doubt anyone has those at home so we'll skip that discussion.
  • Posing. The biggest mistake I commonly see for mirror self-portraits is that people don't fill the frame. Just like with any other portrait, you don't want a lot of background junk getting in the way of everyone looking at you, the subject. Move your face or the camera around enough so that your face is taking up the majority of the frame. Remember, if you can see the opening of the lens, it can see you. Additionally, I find that it's useful to try a bunch of different poses to see what looks good - you can always delete later if you look too silly.
Other tips:
  • Try not to get the camera into the photo - that ruins the effect (in some cases - in others, it's very important to have it there). Take your picture at an angle, bouncing off the mirror.
  • Sometimes if you hold the camera the same distance away from the mirror as your face it has a hard time focusing. Put the camera close to the mirror and shoot, bouncing off the surface, at your face behind.
  • Try different angles, pointing slightly down and slightly up at yourself.
That about wraps it up. If you have any tips on mirror self-portraits, leave a comment!

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