Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Top Model & Photographer

America's Top Model is a great show to watch if you like to learn modeling and photography. Even though I am not a huge of the show, I do occasionally watch the show when I need modeling or photography inspiration.

I have been asked to share a few tips of what I do behind the scenes of my own photo shoot. Mind you I am my own amateur photographer, so my tips and advice are not professional. And I am still learning as I go.

The first step to any photo shoot is to decide what kind of photo concept or theme you want. Do you want a 40's glam look? Or a 50's fun beach look? Then after you decide what concept you want, then you pick out the wardrobe that would fit the best for that particular look. In addition you can also choose a background scene,which will add dimension to your photo shoot.

The night before my photo shoot I do my hair. That way when I get up in the morning my hair is all nice and ready. My hair is very straight, so before I set my hair in pin-curls, I set it in hot curlers. That way my hair has the perfect texture and it's ready to be molded. One of my favorite hair and makeup tutorial that I posted on my website Time Warp Wives on the beauty page is a Marilyn Monroe Hair and Makeup Tutorial. I highly recommend for you to watch this tutorial several times and practice it.

Now is photo shoot time! You might think that this is the fun part for me, not quite that fast Mr. Watson. Here is where my area of expertise is still lacking. You see, I have a Fijifilm Digital Camera and I have a HD Sony Video Recorder camera, that I mainly use for my Retro Films. For some reason when my husband takes photo of me with the Fijifilm Digital Camera, I look like I gained 20 pounds. Mind you, the picture from this camera comes out as a clear sky on a sunny day. I don't know if my husband need a new eye glass prescription or if we needed to readjust the picture setting or what, instead of me looking like a cheerleader, I always end up looking like a Quarterback!

So than I moved on to plan B. I decided to use my Sony Video Camera and take my own pictures. But then because this camera is exclusively made for video recording, still pictures come out a bit dim and not as digital looking as when I use the video recorder. So what is an amateur girl photographer to do? Well, I had to work around this problem and try to make it work.

Before each photo shoot, I try to utilize natural, artificial light and the camera setting the best that I can. So when I am ready, I start taking my first few picture snaps and see how the picture looks. If the picture came out good I stay with the setting. And If it looks awful, I change the settings, lighting or even modeling poses, that will be most flattering. I really don't go by the indoor, outdoor or for the landscape or portfolio setting rule. I go with the combination setting that made my picture look good for that moment. Every time that you take a picture you have to adjust your camera to a different setting, because there are not two days alike.

How do I take my own pictures? Well, my camera came with a timer like most cameras nowadays. I use this feature mainly when I want to show the outfit I am wearing. But when It comes to close up pictures, that's the tricky part. My camera came with a movable picture screen. So when I want to take a close up picture of myself, what I do is that I sit in front of my mirror and then I twist the movable picture screen towards the mirror, as you can seen from the picture above, than I snap a picture. The good thing about having a movable screen is that I could take a picture without the camera lens showing up on the picture. The camera becomes incognito!

I hope that these tips will help in your own photo shoot. And if you have any suggestions for me on how to take great photos, please feel free to email me or leave a comment in this post. I will be so thankful for your suggestions!



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