This post is written by Guest Contributor, Champ Ocampo. If you are also interested in writing a guest blog, please reach out using the form in the Contact page.
After doing few experiments, I can say that shooting self portrait is one of the most difficult categories in photography and fun shooting as well. Getting the right angle will be a difficult task to achieve. But gladly, with the aid of right equipment, self portrait is becoming easier and fun! Shooting oneself requires no boundaries, you can shoot all you want, pose in ways you want and dress up the way you want. It is just between you, your camera and your creativity. Let me share some of the tips and my experience for self portrait shooting.
The equipment I used and recommend
2. External Flash
3. Flash Trigger and Receiver
4. Flash Stand and Hot Shoe holder
5. RF Remote Control
6. External Flash Soft Box (optional)
This self portrait of mine was taken at our dining area after cooking our supper and waiting for my wife to come home from work. This shot was actually experimental. I thought of a “bright and dark side of Champ” concept. The black background was purely improvised. I used my wife’s shawl as my back drop. I mounted my DSLR on a tripod and placed it 2 meters away from me and mounted my external flash unit on a stand and place it closer in front of me about hip high. I also used an external flash soft box diffuser. Now after completing equipment setup, I moved to adjust camera settings. I find camera settings are very important when shooting with variation of lights. I used my kit lens (18-55mm f4.5-5.6) for a semi wide angle shot and used following camera settings.
My camera settings
1. Focal length – 35mm
2. Aperture – f/5.6
3. Shutter Speed – 1/200
4. ISO 200
5. WB – Kelvin 5000 (or Set into Flash icon)
6. Flash Power Level – 1/16
I have few recommendations when you are shooting in this kind of environment. Before shooting, try to turn on all the lights possible to check where you want to stand in front of the camera. If everything looks OK, set your camera shutter release mode into IR Remote timer. It is always convenient to use an IR Remote Control than setting up your camera into 10 second timer, press the shutter release button, run into your place immediately and adjust your desired position. There are lots of cheap IR Remote Controls out there, mine is JJC brand, and it costs around $5. Now if you are ready, turn off all the lights, go to your position, pose yourself, emote and press the remote to release camera shutter. Shoot as many as you want until your battery drains. I am sure you will have fun shooting self portrait. Happy Shooting!