Taking Your Own Pictures




I was finally brave enough to venture on my first solo photo shoot (thank you to my godmother for my awesome tripod!). It was so much fun! People stared, but I didn't care. I knew exactly what I wanted to highlight in each shot, I didn't have to explain to my boyfriend or my mom what I wanted (although I'm very thankful for their past efforts!), and best of all, I didn't have to wait for someone to become available to be my photographer for half an hour. 

By no means am I all of a sudden an expert on solo shooting. I have so much to learn, and I'm so excited to continue learning. Still, I learned a few lessons during my first time, and I'd like to share them with you. They're no-brainers, but I hope you'll find them useful.

  1. Choose a very public location. One of my biggest concerns with going solo on an outfit shoot was appearing vulnerable and being an easy target for all kinds of attacks. You'll get more stares in a very public space, but you should be safer from creeps and thieves. And, if worse comes to worse, just pick up your tripod and smack the perpetrator with it.
  2. Protect your belongings. Take as little as possible with you. Keep all your belongings under your tripod and never stray too far from the tripod. Excessive distance makes for bad shots anyway.
  3. Use a remote control. Going back and forth between shots is a colossal waste of time.
  4. Use a placeholder (e.g., a leaf, a petal, a rock) somewhere in the frame of your shot to know where you should place yourself. 
  5. Be smart about time of day. If you shoot during the middle of the day, harsh sunlight casts unwanted shadows, makes you hotter faster, and makes for more editing time later. Early mornings are my favorite time to shoot, but you'd never know that because I never wake up early enough. If you must shoot during the middle of the day, look for a shaded area that's still bright.
Harsh sunlight casts distracting shadows.
Again, harsh sunlight is not very attractive.
Recognize this dress?
I hope you'll find these 5 tips useful in your own quest to become a more independent blogger. If and when I do get better at this, I'll write another post detailing what else I've learned.

Happy Friday, and thanks for reading!

Blazer: Forever 21 (old)
Dress: Janette Girls (from Lady Lux Boutique, a local small-business shop)
Belt: Forever 21 (came with gray pants)
Heels: Target (now only $14.99!)
Envelope clutch: vintage (from my mom's 80's wardrobe)

37 comments

  1. You look so cute, love this outfit. I take my own pics as well. Good Job!


    xo
    http://pinksole.com

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    1. Thanks, Rachelle! It's the best way to do it for those of us who don't have reliable photographers.

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  2. I really need to get a tripod! I agree that early morning has the best lighting. I had to study that in art school. I kind of like the harsh shadows for some reason, though. Sometimes they work out but you have to get the right angles. It's hard!

    I love your outfit too, by the way. You look so pretty :) The second to last picture is my favorite. I don't think the shadows are distracting at all. But maybe it's because I love the way shadows look...lol...is that weird? ;)

    xo Azu

    www.raven-locks.blogspot.com

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    1. It is hard! Very hard. Early morning light is so forgiving. I agree that shadows can be cool too but getting the right ones takes so much creativity, time, patience, which runs in very short supply for me. And thanks for your kind words! :)

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  3. I totally agree that shooting solo makes me so much more independent. While I've definitely got it down to a quick science with my boyfriend (he knows exactly what shots to get), the feeling of capturing that moment by myself with a tripod can't be beat. I throw in some solo shoots every now and then just to keep me fresh.

    On another note, I completely love your outfit. Red with leopard accents...just perfect.

    Ashlyn
    Triple Thread

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    1. Seriously, it's so exhilarating! Thanks so much, Ashlyn.

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  4. I'm so jealous you have a great setup now! What a great shot! :)

    Sequins&Stilettos

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    1. Haha, yes I do. Although now I don't have an excuse for going a week and a half between posts!

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  5. Replies
    1. Thanks, Kiki! Means a lot coming from a professional. ;)

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  6. Cute look and congrats for your first solo photo shoot, you did it very well :)

    xoxo
    STYLE TRACES
    ST FACEBOOK PAGE
    ST WORLDWIDE GIVEAWAY - HERE

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  7. that is a gorgeous location, and I just love your dress with the leopard accents!
    glad your first solo shoot went well! It's definitely nice when you don't have to rely upon and direct someone else to take your photos, but there are also times when taking the tripod in public gets lots of stares and comments you'd rather not have to deal with!

    Chic on the Cheap

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    1. Thanks, girl! Absolutely; taking your tripod out in public can be daunting. We're oftentimes very deterred by stranger judgement. But this time I decided to put embarrassment aside and focus on taking great pictures. Like I said, I can't wait to do it again! :)

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  8. Thanks for the usefull tips! I,ve recently got a tripod too and using it so much fun but not as easy as it seemed :) You managed to take some awesome pictures!

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    1. Thanks! It's definitely not as easy as it seems. I think getting a remote control might help. I should do that soon. I wish you lots of luck in your picture-taking endeavors!

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  9. These are such fantastic tips girl! All were very smart and helpful :)
    I definitely need a tripod...

    Enter to win an $80 voucher to MsDressy!
    Trendy Teal

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  10. Congrats! I take 99.9% of my own photos too. I think you did a great job! I love that dress too <3

    xo

    Ashley

    Southern (California) Belle

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  11. Nunca he intentado yo sola. Siento que seré un desastre pero tu lo hiciste excelente. Good job girl ;D Thanks for the tips! Mañana intentare hacerlo yo sola, siento que será mejor, a veces mi novio o mi hermano no agarran la idea.

    Y tu vestido de Forever 21 es hermosisimo y perfecto para el fondo! Se me hace muy romántico.

    Pd. Por cierto te quiero entrevistar para mi guest blogger post en mi blog, mandame un email a petitefashionmonster@gmail.com pOr si te interesa.
    xoxo
    Avi

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    1. Gracias, Avi! El unico detalle es que es bastante dificil hacer close-ups. Pero la verdad es que hay mucha libertad cuando lo hacemos nosotras solas. Let me know how it goes for you! :)

      Y ya te habia escrito para atras. Muchas gracias por escogerme! Recibistes mi email?

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  12. HI!! I found your blog on a thread on lookbook! I like it very much and im following u! If you want check out ours as well and if u like follow us back here: http://outfitandabit.blogspot.com Thanx:)

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  13. your dress is soo pretty!

    <3Chelsea Elizabeth

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  14. Love this look! You would have gotten plenty of stares regardless of what you were wearing, but I'm sure wearing red didn't make it any easier! LOL. Great idea on the tripod. When I first started I'd take pics by myself, but since I didn't have a remote control I had to go back and forth and the problem is, since I wasn't on the frame, all the pictures would be out of focus! But definitely getting a tripod was a good call, now you don't have to depend on anyone for your pictures. I think I'm gonna go out and get myself a remote control, haha. You inspired me.
    www.clothesandfashion.net

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    1. Haha, thanks!! Glad I inspired you. :)

      I got lots of confused stares, but also lots of indifference glances. So it wasn't so bad. :)

      And yes, I definitely need to follow my tip # 3. Going back and forth was a huge waste of time!

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  15. Nathy, congrats on your first venture out alone! I'm such a wuss and just hide in my front lawn every day. :-S You got some great shots and that color is gorgeous on you. I'm so far behind on blogging, but have missed you and hope you're doing well!

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    1. Haha, thank you Bonnie! You have a great lawn though, so you're excused.

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  16. that's pretty awesome that you were able to venture out on your own to take pictures! loving your look, love the pop of leopard at your feet!

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    1. Thank you! The pop of leopard is my favorite part. ;)

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  17. Beautiful photos and very good advices!
    You look is wonderful!

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  18. I've been taking my own pictures all this time and only recently started asking for help! I found pros and cons to both like, when my boyfriend and sister takes them its harder for ME because i know in my head what i want and they have their own ideas whereas when i do it myself i usually get exactly what i want or can only blame myself for not! anywho great pictures you must have a nice camera! I gotta get me a remote camera though it has always been so annoying and embaressing running back and forth.. great post i loved it!

    youngandfashionable-teal.blogspot.ca

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    1. So glad you liked the post!! I totally agree. It's hard to communicate what you want, because you have this vision that's based on hours and hours of seeing looks online. Not everyone understands the angle you want, the detail that you want, the lighting that you want. I have to get myself a remote control too. That would make my solo job even easier.

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  19. This is such a great post, Nathy! Great tips for someone just starting out! It can be a daunting task, but with these tips you make it sound easy peasy :)
    Thanks for sharing!!
    -Carley
    xx

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Thanks for your comments, everyone!
I enjoy reading them and checking out your blogs, too. :)