How To Take A Good Picture Of Yourself

How to take a good picture of yourself while traveling … you’re on this amazing trip around the world – you take hundreds of pictures from all different angles, when you return you have pictures of amazing buildings, and places – but none of you!

The best way to avoid this from happening is simply to learn how to take a good picture of yourself while on the road!- no excuses, you can learn this easily!

how to take a good picture of yourself

Maybe you did get over your shyness and take a few pictures of yourself – but end up with the angles looking kinda weird with a face squashed in the corner…

-  Or your whole face takes up the picture frame, blocking out the cool tourist attraction behind you – all you seasoned travelers know the situation, and we have all done it!

Those are two common results when taking pictures of yourself traveling around the world, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way.

Here is a guide to help you learn how to take a good picture of yourself and capture that special place at the same time.

And don’t forget to use these great self pictures to create a Create Your Own Custom Photo Book. What better way than to remember your trip than a personally designed book full of pictures you took yourself?

How To Take A Good Picture Of Yourself

There are 3 ways for how to take a good picture of yourself:

1. Do It Alone

Just DO IT! Just take one of yourself. Many people feel like dorks when doing this, but come on – nobody actually cares about what you do or how you do it – it’s all in your head.

Most people won’t even see, and the ones who do will either come up and ask you if you want them to take one of you or not even care.

Plus, I think most people have been in that situation themselves, it’s really nothing strange about taking pictures of yourself.

Here is a sum-up of how to take a good picture of yourself:

Practice Makes Perfect

When you take a photo of yourself with one arm reaching out, you will have to strike a different “pose” than normal.

To make sure you get a good photo at the spot, make sure to learn how to take a good picture of yourself before you travel.

Practice at home, until you find the right angle for your face – that way you won’t have to take 20 pictures until you get one which is OK-looking.

The best way to avoid the stupid feeling of “vanity”, loneliness or whatever it is making you feel uncomfortable when taking pictures of yourself, is to get it over with quickly.

If you practice at home, get to know your best pose, you can get it done quickly by just taking one photo, and you’ll have an awesome picture within seconds.

Tips On What To Wear And How To Look:

- If you know your background will mostly be green, wear something red. Compliment the colors in your background by wearing its opposite color (green / red, yellow/purple etc)

- Use the setting “smooth skin colors” on your camera if possible. It will make your face look smooth and even.

- Take the photo slightly from above. Not too high above, but slightly higher than eye level.

- Take the photo on the side where your hair is parted on, that will usually look better.

2. Use The Camera Timer

If there is nobody around, or you feel like it’s safe to put the camera on timer and walk a few steps away from it, then the coast is clear.

Find a steady place where you feel like the camera is safe from falling, check the screen to see exactly where you’re aiming in the picture, set the timer on 10 seconds and RUN! – 10 seconds is usually enough to get into the picture, strike your pose and smile.

Tip: If you don’t have a “real” tripod I strongly recommend you buy the Gorillapod - which is a flexible tripod which you can twist and turn the three legs in any direction so you can take a photo anywhere no matter the situation.

Another way to get a photo of yourself slightly further away than the arm can reach is to use a quickpod so you can still have the camera in your hands but at a further distance.

3. Ask Someone

The best way to get a good picture of yourself is, obviously, not to take it yourself. If you want to take this easy way out, and aren’t interested in learning how to take a good picture of yourself by yourself, then go for this one.

Choose someone who looks trustworthy to take a picture of you, for example a person who is already taking pictures of something, themselves or others. Japanese tourists take a lot of pictures, so if you’re lucky enough to see a group of them – take the chance.

This is also a great way to meet new people – local or tourist, and start up a conversation – just be cautious of scammers.

Hope these tips helped you learn how to take a good picture of yourself while traveling – if you have any other tips, just share them below!

(photo credit: 1)

30 Responses to How To Take A Good Picture Of Yourself

  1. GlobalButterfly September 19, 2010 at 3:06 pm #

    Great tips! Usually I start to take a pic of myself and someone kindly offers to take it for me. I find that’s the easiest way of dong it haha.

    • Regpit September 20, 2010 at 6:26 pm #

      Had this happend to me a lot ;)

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:17 am #

      I like that, when people do something just to be nice, and not wanting to get something back from it. Giving a helping hand :)

  2. Brankica September 20, 2010 at 6:26 pm #

    I love the tip number three. My hubby and me are using it all the time. He is the master now :) He is so used to taking a photo of two of us like that, without loosing the whole background that we have hundreds of photos now, all taken by him with his arm stretched.
    Thanks for the great tips :)

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:40 am #

      Hey Regpit! That’s great! Nathan takes most of the pictures of us together as well, I guess it helps to have a long arm :)

  3. Roni Weiss September 20, 2010 at 6:33 pm #

    #3 is my trademark. I usually delete the pix that other people take for/of me.

    (Roni on Left: http://bit.ly/9Y5jQg)

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:42 am #

      I just checked out your photos – awesome! Great trademark there, and a good name haha..

  4. Ayngelina September 20, 2010 at 5:42 pm #

    Nice tips, before I started this RTW I had no idea how to take a photo of myself but I have to say I’m getting pretty good with the outstretched arm technique.

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:20 am #

      Practice makes perfect ;)
      I’ve found that the picture looks so much better if the outstretched arm is slightly bent, that way it’s not so obvious that it’s outstretched :P

  5. Jaime September 20, 2010 at 8:46 pm #

    Great tips, Ill be sure to practice before I head on my RTW trip~

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 8:03 am #

      Practicing on stuff like that makes it so much easier on the spot, you just click and it’s done.

      I’ve found that I get the best photos when I hold my arm slightly bent outwards and slightly angled, almost like the camera lens is aiming at my left eye.

      Generally a flattering angle is slightly above the head with the camera height somewhere between your upper chest and forehead.

      good luck! :)

  6. Anonymous September 20, 2010 at 7:10 pm #

    The quikpod looks like a good solution

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:44 am #

      Interesting.. it would have been great if you could have used it as a normal tripod as well. thanks for sharing :)

  7. Connie Hum September 21, 2010 at 11:38 am #

    Another thing, you can use a mini tripod. It can give you a better angle when trying to take your own photo with the timer or it can help you give a little bit of a longer reach with your arm! I’m in love with my gorillapod for these purposes!

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:51 am #

      I love the gorillapod too, it’s awesome. It’s always hard to find a good place to put the camera, but with that little thing you can put it pretty much anywhere.

  8. Miss Britt September 22, 2010 at 2:01 am #

    You HAVE to check out the XShot camera extender. I finally started getting pictures of myself on trips and with my family. Our photo album now looks like my kids adopted me when they were about 5, but at least I’m finally in there!

    • Sofia September 24, 2010 at 7:49 am #

      Hahaha that’s true, in family pictures there is always one member missing! Perhaps it’s a great tool, it seems to fold up pretty small, but it would have been great if it worked as a normal tripod as well – I love multi purpose things ;)

  9. Andrew Murray October 7, 2010 at 8:58 pm #

    Great tips, no more wonky self portraits or unfortunate nostril shots for me!

  10. Anonymous October 13, 2010 at 11:08 pm #

    I take a ridiculous amount of photos while traveling and have a couple more options for your list that I sometimes utilize. I think the self extended arm shot will do in a pinch but tends to be over done (especially for facebook profiles) so I always carry a tripod of some sorts with me just to make sure I get a couple of myself. Also, i like using a small remote so I can just snap snap snap as if i had my own hired photographer on the other end without needing to ask someone to take a lot of pictures for me and I can play around with different exposures.

    • As We Travel December 16, 2010 at 1:55 pm #

      That’s true, photos usually turn out looking very similar that way. Using a small remote sounds like a great idea, thanks for sharing!

  11. Poor Travel Blogger November 7, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    I love using the self timer to take action shots! I’ve tripped a couple of times trying to get back into my pose but it’s well worth it. I usually sit my backpack upright and place the camera on top of it. This is my favorite action shot so far: http://poortravelblogger.com/2010/10/26/hitchhiking-from-amsterdam/
    Great article!

  12. Martijn Reintjes November 21, 2010 at 7:13 pm #

    the only problem with asking someone is that other people usually take really crappy pictures. That’s why I sometimes make the frame myself first, then ask someone, tell them to stand in the exact spot and don’t touch anything other than the shutter button.

    If you don’t do this, you end up with pictures without your feet, or where you are standing in way to small compared to the whole frame…

  13. Antoine Leporc November 22, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    When you usually ‘do it alone’ you end up with a picture of you with a zoom on your nose, or completely blur/out of focus…

  14. Taylor Williams December 6, 2010 at 4:08 pm #

    I just saw something called a “monopod” on another site! It’s an arm that you put your camera on that helps you take photos of your self with stuff in the background!

  15. mach3 December 16, 2010 at 1:05 pm #

    People always seem to want to help a single traveler like me in such situations.

  16. Flora January 13, 2011 at 3:35 am #

    I swear by my gorillapod. If I leave the house with my camera, the gorillapod comes, too.

  17. Anonymous January 22, 2011 at 9:24 am #

    I have always wished to take photos of myself while traveling but as always i travel alone! but got good tips from this article :)

  18. Federico January 25, 2011 at 2:36 am #

    With time I have acquired a relatively good technique for those self portraits that are so much fun. The stretched arm position is the way to go! Great videos by the way, and the intro to each rocks!

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