Taking your own photos. The 10 second timer.


The Timer Camera

Black mirror season 3 episode 1 perfectly summed up the vast power social media holds, although exaggerated it portrays some scary truths. The creation of these instant communication platforms is amazing, but the people that use them and take advantage of them are not. At DATEnhance we do not want to deliver a message that in order to succeed, you must seek validation from others online. Rather, we believe your value is who you are, not what you look like.

Camera Man GIF by KARE 11 - Find & Share on GIPHY

What we do want, however, is for you to show your best self through a small collection of images. We help you take the best photo, preaching the importance of good lighting, a nice background and good composition of an image. With the constant restrictions of lockdowns and social distancing, if you do want to find a romantic connection you have to look online. There is, quite frankly, no other option.

As humans, we make snap judgements. When you see the first image of another user on a dating platform, you quickly think do I want to see more or read their bio or just no. We want to make sure these judgements are fair and showcase you in the best possible light so that people will take the time to read your bio. For this to happen your first photo has to be strong. We cannot stress enough that we see your image as an entire entity, and we do not judge you on your appearance but can advise how to take a strong photo.

Research shows that selfies, particularly with men, tend to score lower than a photo taken of them. The angles are peculiar and often too close and so our first piece of advice is to get someone to take a photo for you. This can be anyone! A parent, sibling, friend or even a stranger. I am sure you have been in a tourist hotspot at one point in your life and someone has asked you to take a photo for them – well its time for you to do the same! A stranger is also less likely to judge you on what you are doing so just act confident and pose! A tourist destination will generally make for a good backdrop, another win. Top tip for the best results, look for someone who appears to have an interest in photography. By this I mean if they are taking lots of photos or holding a big camera.

Selfie GIF - Find on GIFER

However, if you don’t have anyone to hand, you can take your own pictures! The 10-second timer is your new best friend. All you need is a phone camera or a normal camera and a timer. A tripod can be good addition but is not necessary.  It may seem narcissistic at first, but in reality it is much easier to take your own photos as you will not be shy around the photographer if they don’t exist. Also, it is impossible to tell if someone has taken a photo on a timer. You can pose however you want, take as many photos as you want, and no one can make a passing comment on it. You can also set your phone on front camera timer so that you can see what you look like. Setting a timer instead of taking a selfie allows for a wide-angle thus seeing more of the main feature – you! You can be more creative showing outfits, a hobby, or just your cracker smile.

Another tip to help your photo excel is to play with the lighting/brightness and exposure. I am not talking about a heavy Instagram filter but playing with the lighting on an image can make such a difference. You do not even need an app to do this you can simply use the edit features on the iPhone. Brightening so we can clearly see your face and the background will make your photo much more appealing.

If you are feeling adventurous you can always use photoshop. Changing the colour of the sky or adding a different background, if done correctly, can be very effective. People will either wonder how you looked so good after your trek up Mount Everest or be impressed with your photo shop skills – a win win!

In all, ditch the selfies. Not entirely, perhaps you can have one or two, but more than this will prevent people to really see you in all your glory.