Make Self Portraits Not Selfies

Today’s Post by Mark Toal

The art of the self portrait seems to have turned into a way to say “look where I am and whom I’m with.” At least that’s what it said in an article It’s a way to say “look at me, I’m here.”

In reality photography and painting have a long history of the creation of self-portraits that show more about the person and what they are thinking or feeling at the moment that the image was captured. Because photography has always been immediate, the temptation to snap a photo to show where we are is all but impossible to resist.

Self Portrait

I grew up in Miami, Florida so most of the photos from my childhood are in front of some touristy spot like the Seaquarium or Tropical Gardens. These images feel like postcards to me and don’t say anything about what was going on. My favorite childhood photo is one of my my father holding me and seeing the happy look on his face as he looks at me with no sign of where we were when it was taken.

I used to take a lot of self-portraits but as I get older and less happy about the way I look I’ve haven’t done any for a long time. Maybe I’ll give it another try.

selfies Tips from Mark: Think about putting on your clothes and getting out of the bathroom for your next selfie. Google “self portrait photography,” then click on Images to get some ideas (see above) for your next self-portrait.

Tip for Joe: The best book on this subject is the new out-of-printSelf-Portrait Photography: The Ultimate in Personal Expression” but available on Amazon at most affordable prices. This brilliant, inspired book by Miss Aniela will make a great holiday git for someone—including yourself.