How-To: Perfect The Art Of The Selfie
Published: Sunday, September 22, 2013
Updated: Sunday, September 22, 2013 20:09
Perfecting the selfie is no easy feat. In our generation, it’s not only become a rite of passage, but a necessary form of communication.
Before you embark on the ever multi-faceted journey that is taking a selfie, you must ask yourself these three questions:
1. Are you drunk or are you sober?
Crucial. If you’re in a state of euphoric inebriation, you probably should just disregard all of the below. In the age of Snapchat, not only are we more apt to send duck-faced, vodka-induced selfies to everyone that we’ve ever even looked at on campus, but the proof of what we sent self-destructs within 10 seconds and we’ll never know what we in fact sent. If you opt to just go for a selfie sent via text without the assistance of Snapchat, have fun checking that one out in the morning. It’s probably blurry, you probably look gross, and you probably want to throw your phone off the bleachers of Conte so that you never have to look at it ever again.
The sober selfie is also somewhat embarrassing as well, depending on your reasoning behind taking it. If you’re taking a picture of yourself because you think you’re hot and everyone wants to see how killer your new crop top is and how long your new mascara makes your eyelashes look, you’re not and they don’t. But a sober selfie is a solid selfie so long as you’re doing it for the entertainment factor, some sort of comedic relief. Or maybe the statue of Flutie is just so alluring that you couldn’t resist snapping a picture in front of it. That’s cute. But then again you run into the issue of people seeing you do so, which brings me to my next point.
2. Are you in public or in private?
This is a major determining factor in taking a selfie. Let’s stick with the Flutie example. Given that the entrance to Conte is a pretty public place, there are probably people around. There would be no point in trying to explain to anyone who saw you why you were taking the selfie because they really don’t care. Either way you were just that guy taking a picture of yourself in the middle of Lower campus. Good move. Regardless of the poses you strike or the face that you make, there’s nothing more embarrassing than being caught taking a selfie in public. (Or in Theology class. We all have our days.)
If you find yourself in the comfort of your own bed, couch, house, or the ever-growing popular selfie location that has become the bathroom, however, it’s game on. Free range to make the ugliest face possible in an environment where the only embarrassment to be felt is the one you feel on behalf of yourself.
3. Are you planning on posting said selfie on any form of social media?
If the answer is no, then feel free to get as weird and as ratchet as your little heart desires. But if so, you’re entering the territory of a more advanced selfie technique: the pretty ugly face. A technique that is hard to master, but one so crucially vital if you plan on uploading that baby on to Instagram and giving it an Amaro filter (or feeling the anxiety of flipping through filters for 15 minutes). You must make a face that looks like you’re not trying hard—you have to look good enough so that it looks like even when you’re making an ugly face, you’re still attractive. You know you’ve done it.
Once you’ve answered the three vital questions, you’re ready to take your shot, staying conscious of the five most important factors:
1. Angle and aim
Straight on or from high up above aiming down makes you look skinnier. Just saying.
No one wants to see your creepy criminal-esque face rising from the shadows but no one wants to be blinded by the brightness either. Balance is key.
3. Facial expression
Pick the emotion you’re trying to convey and attempt to find a common ground between serious and total joke. No duck faces or you don’t deserve a frontward facing camera.
4. Enhance and filter
Crucial especially if you’re putting it on social media. The technology on smartphones (especially the iPhone) makes it ridiculously easy to enhance the quality of your shot on the spot.
5. Take multiple “shots” at it
You’re never going to get it right on the first shot and if you do, you’re probably Gisele, so stop taking selfies.
Remember, perfecting the selfie is a modern-day art form, and if anyone criticizes you, you’re just trying to set the world aflame with your artistic expression.