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Tips & Techniques > better self portraits in the mirror

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Posted by: kkkkaty
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About kkkkaty starstarstar
Member since: 12/7/05
Reviews: 138 (tips: 19)
Skill level:Intermediate
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Posted on: 12/3/07 6:20 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 20 people   
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Do you have to endlessly wait for your significant other to help when you need a picture for a review? Seen enough pictures taken in a mirror where you see more of the camera than the person, or are distracted by other things in the shot? here are some ideas to get a better picture.

1: Stand in front of a well-lit mirror. I get good results at a large sink with vanity lights over the top of the mirror. Hold the camera out to the side, almost at arms length, and then tilt it slightly back towards your image in the mirror. You may have to adjust a little, but If you do this properly, the camera won't actually be in the picture, just you. Of course, your arm is out at a somewhat unusual angle, but who cares?

2. It will feel a little odd, but turn your body at a slight angle to the mirror, and look at the reflection of the camera, don't look straight into the mirror at yourself. By facing the camera reflection, and looking at the reflection, you are actually looking into the camera lens, and you'll get more of a portrait, less of an odd side-on picture. Think of it as if someone is standing next to you, and you are turned slightly to look in their eyes in the mirror. They are turned slightly towards you at about the same angle.

Also, if the area you are taking the picture in is a bit dark, you can use your flash using this technique. That's because the camera is at an angle to the mirror, so the light from the flash will bounce off the mirror and illuminate you. If you are pointing the camera straight at a mirror, the flash doesn't help/work because it bounces right back in the camera.

Want to know more about reflections? Visit the link above, and look at the diagram of mirror reflections on the right. You are "P" and the camera is "Q". By looking at point "O" yourself, and by pointing the camera at the point "O" on the mirror, you and the camera are looking at each other. If you have any trouble getting the focus right, remember that the distance the camera is seeing is actually from the camera, to the mirror, and then to you (total distance from P to O to Q, not just the distance from the camera to the mirror)

Experiment! Hope this helps.....

Here's a photo I took this way: 3894

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moushka said... (12/9/07 8:39 PM) Reply
Great tip. Thanks very much. Sue
solosmocker said... (12/7/07 7:20 PM) Reply
Great information!
Danvillegirl said... (12/7/07 6:53 AM) Reply
This was most helpful!
abcameo said... (12/4/07 12:29 PM) Reply
Thanks for this terrific tip. Whenever I take some shots in the mirror to share, I end up with my eyes looking shifty as I furtively attempt to glance directly at the camera (to press the "shoot" button) without obviously appearing to do so.
Donna H said... (12/4/07 12:03 PM) Reply
I always turn off the flash on my camera, too, because the picture isn't of you, it's of the flash.
Grammy Gin said... (12/4/07 9:53 AM) Reply
I'm going to try this! Thanks! I haven't taken any pics yet of my, no reviews as of yet. ;-)
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