5 Tips for Stunning IG Yoga Selfies

For me taking yoga photos for my IG account is a creative outlet. I do my practice at home then go on little adventures in nature to shoot.
Sometimes I dream of having a professional photographer every time I shoot but actually I love my solo time, enjoying the breathtaking beauty of Mother Nature, watching eagles soar above me, waves crash around me and creating art.
Most people are shocked when I say that I take most the photos myself on my humble iPhone 6S. After a moment of silence they then ask “What? But how?”. So I thought I’d put a few tips I’ve gleaned. I hope they help!

1/ Be prepared –
Save photos that inspire you (the ribbon button under the image) – It could be the pose, the camera angle, the variation or anything you’ve liked about the shot. Make sure they are achievable for you! Here’s a screenshot of mine.
Choose 3 to 6 poses you want to shoot, knowing that like any selfie, some won’t work out.
Your colour scheme is also important for your account so choose outfits to wear or change into.
I also check tide, sunrise and sunset times as my shots are mostly on the beach. (The weather app has this important info).
Be prepared to be a spectacle if you are shooting outdoors! Mostly I find people either ignore me or are actually inspired by my antics. “I wish I could handstand like that!”

2/ Lighting –
Lighting makes a huge difference to the overall feel of the shot. By now you’ve probably heard of the golden hour, when the outdoor lighting makes you glow. If you haven’t this is it’s the small window just before and after both sunset and sunrise.
Given the small window, preparation and knowing what you are going to do is vital. Be a good Girl/Boy Scout.
When I visited Las Vegas this year I noticed some of the indoor venues had this twilight/golden hour lighting – it was selfie heaven!!
Overcast skies are actually wonderful too especially if you are looking for the faded effect.

3/ Camera Angle –
I use a little octopus tripod which allows me to manage uneven terrain and keep the horizon line straight.
Have the camera low to give a fresh perspective (instead of the usual eye height).
Be off centre – yes that’s right – don’t centre yourself instead be slightly to the left or right of the image. This is the ‘rule of thirds’ or ‘nines’ that shows where the human eye naturally goes in an image.
This grid comes up in the Adjust tab while editing in IG – see how I’m positioned on that right hand line? This is the best place to position yourself, of course it will depend on the size of the shot, but you get the picture.
I have the screen facing me (on selfie view) so that I can see what the shot looks like instantly. Yes the camera is not as good but this saves valuable time (remember you have to work quickly with that golden hour).
You can use the 10 sec selfie setting on your camera, but some poses are impossible to rush into SO I video the pose or poses then take a screen shot of the video. Yes again perhaps there is a loss of quality but it’s better than a torn hamstring! Here’s a shot of my high tech set up and $3 tripod (from eBay).

4/ Background –
Keep it clean and clear so that you and your pose are the focus of the photos. With the camera low you will get more sky in the shot. Overcast skies create a wonderful contrast. I use the bright blue skies as I have so many of them where I live.

5/ Edit –
Remember how I said IG is a creative outlet for me? I edit most of my shots through the IG app itself. Here’s my go to edits (not filters)
Adjust (straighten the horizon, it makes sense to our brain)
Saturation & contrast (I increase these a little)
Sharpen (given all of the above hits I’ve taken, I pretend this actually does something).
Occasionally I play with Brightness, Shadows and Vignette
Go with the style and colour scheme for your account you can edit your pics to make them pop or fade a little more, as you like.
Other apps I like and use are Snapseed and PS Express (photoshop)

I truly hope this helps you to get some great shots.  Feel free to tag or mention me over on IG so I can see your handywork.  Have fun and make it playful! @yoginivanessa