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World Photography Day: 5 Tips For Your Selfies

Some tips to take advantage of your smartphone's camera and take high-quality frontal shots.

Woman taking a selfie

World Photography Day reminds us of the importance of some aesthetic criteria to take better captures. Photo: Unsplash

LatinAmerican Post | Ariel Cipolla

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Leer en español: Día Mundial de la Fotografía: 5 consejos para tus selfies

World Photography Day reminds us of the importance of some aesthetic criteria to take better captures. For those who do not know, it is celebrated on August 19. On that date, but in 1839, the French Academy of Sciences announced to the world the creation of the "daguerreotype", a prototype of today's cameras that marked a before and an after when immortalizing images.

It is an invention created by the Frenchman Louis-Jaques-Mandé Daguerre (which explains his name). The daguerreotype is a device that allows, through a “mirror” system that revealed the image, to obtain a visual representation of what was portrayed on a polished silver surface.

The invention spread worldwide but was then refined over the years, to what we have today: high-quality cameras on any smartphone. Despite advanced technology, we do not always know how to use it to our advantage. Here are 5 useful and precise tips to improve the quality of your selfies.

1. Take advantage of the golden hour or the blue hour

These two photography concepts can be really useful to improve the results of your captures. The golden hour is when the sun appears (sunrise) or when it disappears (sunset). The blue hour occurs moments before sunrise and sunset.

Every moment of the day can be perfect to take advantage of a beautiful and natural landscape, although, of course, with different effects. The most recommended thing is that you try each one of them and take different selfies, because you will notice that, without having to digitally alter the image, you will have fabulous results.

2. The importance of the background

This is useful when you consider that not just any background applies to every situation. For example, if you have to take a picture of yourself to insert in your resume or in the profile photo of a certain social network, the fundamental thing is that the background is a smooth wall, preferably white.

This will avoid distractions and allow you to focus your image on what is important: your face. Conversely, if you are looking for something more relaxed, where your face is combined with a certain landscape, you can try and experiment in different locations. Consider that, depending on the tonality (cold or warm) the effect on your face could change.

3. Use burst mode (and mirror)

Are you one of those people who are never satisfied with selfies that are taken? Maybe you should take advantage of Burst or Live mode, in case you have an iPhone. If you do not know what it is about, it is a function that allows you to take captures in frames, that is, in small fractions of a second.

This will help you select a specific part of the photograph on time, which will prevent, for example, choosing one in which you have closed your eyes. Also, remember that some smartphones incorporate the mirror photography option by default, which can alter the final result. Don't forget to deactivate it!

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4. Natural light (or artificial, depending on aesthetics)

A priori, your selfies should always be set in natural light. This does not mean that the incidence of light is zero: depending on how you use it, one thing or another will be seen. For example, you should be careful of backlights, which may not give details about your face, although they can serve to highlight the landscape in the background.

Also, artificial light can be welcome, as long as you want to give a certain effect to a capture. If you don't have artificial light, don't worry: there are different Instagram filters that allow you to change the lighting of the place where you are, although, of course, the results will not be the same.

For example, cold lighting can create a feeling of sadness. Conversely, a warm one could bring joy. Even black & white trends are often useful to reinforce nostalgia.

5. Take care of planes and angles

Finally, it is important that you know that images can say something depending on the perspective you are looking to give it. For example, a very close-up will show details of your face that will not be seen when using a medium shot. That is, depending on how far you take your selfie, the results will vary.

The same thing happens with the angulation of the camera. A low angle (from above) will have a different effect than a low angle (from below). For example, the first gives a feeling of "helplessness", while the other gives the opposite effect, as it enlarges and magnifies you.

It is important to feel comfortable with the pose and style you are looking to give to each shot. Although it is about personal preferences, each person has their own aesthetic that is enhanced when you have an account on a social network where you regularly upload content.

Enjoy World Photography Day with all these tips!