This is probably the hardest genre to strive at and create satisfactory work, as you are indeed your own worst enemy.
I know we live in the 21st century where selfies are taken 99% of the time (or in photography terms, self-portraiture), but this by far the most difficult subject to photograph. I knew I sucked at this, but I knew it was something I wanted to get into, from all the content I found online, I was yearning to try.
I’ve been avoiding the subject for the longest time.
I hit a rough patch with my photography work and needed some inspiration, I knew I needed a challenge so then decided to start a 52week self portrait project, which takes 365 days Basically you photograph one image of yourself (turns out it’s actually a full on photoshoot, in order to get one image). You do this every week for an entire year. It sounds so simple, right? Wrong? You kind of have no excuse because you are the subject matter but, it really pushes you to create and dig deep within. Sometimes life gets busy so a week feels like you had no time to actually create. My project took a year and a half to complete.
What to focus on when you start this project?
It is import to get comfortable in front of the camera. I don’t just mean taking the photograph. I mean to fearlessly get into the confident mode/mood and not be scared away or get shy when someone walks by and stares at you. This is difficult at first, as you don’t know how to pose or you just feel really dumb and self-conscious. This can affect the outcome, so see what feels comfortable and see what’s trending/ how people are posing and you will learn to get comfortable.
I usually focus on these
stare at something in the distance
smile like a fool. Smile with teeth, without teeth, smile with your eyes only
move a hand or hands closer to the face
put a hand through your hair
staring into the lens, serious and smiling
Things to watch out for
watch the shadow of the camera, or person taking the picture. Make sure the shadow doesn’t fall on you in the picture. Step back or rotate away from the sun/ person taking, so the shadow falls on the floor, or behind you.
Watch the background. Make sure no bins, random objects aren’t visible in your images. Toilets(if you into bathroom selfies), food, shoes, move all objects and things
Or hide them behind you when taking the photograph.
Do a whole bunch, you will eventually see what you like. I think when I started I hated all of them. I still probably do, but go fearlessly in the wind and just share some of them. Usually people respond well, because you already have this self-image of yourself, and people see you differently so they normally love it.
Go out there and care less about what others think, or how they will perceive you.
They will be judging you anyway ,so why not go out stop being afraid.