How To Take Photos Of Yourself By Yourself

By Rogan Smith |
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black woman holds camera on her blog where she shows how to take photos of yourself by yourself

In this age of social media, the pressure is always on to post high-quality photos that will keep our Instagram popping. But, few people can afford to have a photographer documenting their every waking moment.

And if you don’t know a lot of people or have a friend or family member who can help you out when you need quick photos, it can be difficult to get the shots you want.

Well guess what? I’m going to show you how to take photos of yourself. All you need is a little creativity and a few items. The best part? You don’t even need a high-quality camera. Just your cell phone.

A light skinned black woman with wavy red hair poses with a white flower in her mouth
This photo was taken on an inexpensive camera.

I’m big on doing things on a budget, so, you don’t even need an expensive phone. Most of my photos are filmed on a $64 phone that I got from AT&T. And all of the photos you’re about to see in this blog post were taken with my Android phone.

I happen to have a fancy, expensive Canon camera, but I rarely use it. Instead, I use my cell to take quick photos of myself.

They’re perfect because they’re lightweight, easy to mount to a tripod and can email photos easily.

You Will Need:

  1. A cell phone – it doesn’t matter what type you have, so long as it takes decent photos.
  2. A tripod. I got mine, a MacTrem, from Amazon several years ago and it’s still holding up nicely considering the amount of times I use it. Do not, under any circumstances, purchase a flimsy tripod, especially if you plan on taking photos outdoors in the elements. It will blow over and potentially damage your phone. You don’t want that.
  3. A cell phone mount that you can mount to your tripod. You can find one in Wal-Mart or on Amazon by clicking here. I take mine everywhere and it works perfectly.
  4. A remote control shutter.

7 Tips For High-Quality Photos

  1. Firstly – and this is going to sound so rudimentary – but you will need to ensure that you clean your camera’s lens. I have ruined many good photos because I didn’t bother to clean the damned lens. It’s a small thing, but it’s often overlooked.
  2. Make sure you have proper lighting. The right lighting can make an inexpensive, no frills phone, shine. Natural light is my absolute favourite type of lighting. It makes your skin look absolutely flawless. But, try not to take photos in too harsh a lighting. It will highlight all of your imperfections and who wants that? If you live in an area that doesn’t have great natural lighting, purchase a ring light. I am not a fan of the umbrella lights they sell on Amazon as they don’t give sufficient light. But, they do give soft light.
black woman wearing green holds candle
Try an overhead shot like I did in this picture.

3. Take photos at interesting angles. The beauty of photography is that you can truly get creative. Try taking overhead shots or shots from the ground up. Position yourself on the floor like I did in the picture above, or if you want to feel more grand, place your camera on the floor and snap pics of yourself. Doing so gives a different type of perspective and makes the shot visually interesting.

4. If your camera is equipped with a wide angle lens, use it. That lens allows you to capture details at a much wider angle view. If your camera doesn’t have one already built in, you can purchase one from Amazon, which you can clip over your lens.

blog post picture of breakfast flat lay breakfast tray loni love i changed so you don't have to
You don’t always need a tripod. This flat lay was taken without one and is still effective. You’ll just need two cameras for this shot.

5. Use your shutter or cell phone’s timer. Technology is such that you don’t need anyone to stand and take your photos. You can use your remote, which you can pair to your cell via bluetooth, or you can set your timer and take your photos. If you decide to use your timer, set it at 10 seconds. That gives you sufficient time to get in place and do last minute pose changes, if necessary.

6. I know this goes without saying, but try to look your absolute best in your photos. Remember, you are the star. You’re the subject of the photo. So, you’ll want to look your absolute best. Trust me, your Instagram feed will thank you, and so will your many followers.

7. Keep your aesthetic in mind. I recently got serious about my Instagram feed. I wasn’t at first. If you scroll down to the bottom of my feed, you’ll see a bunch of different colours and photo types. They don’t look bad, but they just don’t look cohesive. So, when taking photos keep your aesthetic at the front of your mind. And try to ensure that your brand colours are somewhere in your shots.

On my YouTube channel, I recently did a video on how to take photos alone using your cell. I also showed some ways you can create a beautiful background for your photos. Click the video above to watch it. Don’t forget to subscribe to my channel by clicking here.

I hope you enjoyed these quick tips and that you will use them to take better photos by yourself. Remember, you don’t need anyone to do this. You can do this alone, just remember what you learned.

I can’t wait to hear all about how you levelled up your Instagram feed.

XOXO,

This Bahamian Gyal

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