Lights, camera, pose!- How to make yourself look better in pictures

As you rummage through the umpteen pictures in your phone’s gallery, it is quite common to feel disappointed. The dilemma of asking your friend for another picture or settling with mediocre ones is a real thing. And you question yourself whether donning that cherry-red dress or that emerald-green Punjabi that day was worth it.
But fear not! With these photography tips in mind, you can be the star of your crush’s Instagram feed.

The Basics

When it comes to lighting in portraits, there are endless possibilities both indoors and outdoors. Acquaint yourself with the surroundings. Capturing pictures early in the morning, during late afternoons or in overcast weather can result in fascinating natural-light portraits.
However, be careful during midday or indoor photography. As you must always make sure your face is facing the light to help you define the features and minimize unappealing shadows.

Going “Extra”

Wearing that lacy maroon kameez and making your beau get a matching shirt may seem like a lot of effort. But you would thank us when it results in that picture-perfect moment captured in a photograph! The background and the setting are also paramount to the success in taking a good picture. A neutral, uncluttered background; or an interesting wall, fence or even a door can provide the perfect pop of color and texture.

Moreover, you might want to choose a place that goes well with your outfit. If you are wearing western apparel, you might want to go for places such as Edith, Horse and Horse, The Red Chamber or the fancy hotels in Dhaka- as the ornamented furniture, ravishing décor and chandeliers and the gorgeous lighting make the places very photogenic! However, if you are going for a more traditional attire, check out places such as The Green Lounge, Cha Walah, Chows restaurant, Ajo Idea Space, etc. Places that provide picturesque outdoor as well as indoor settings for the photographs.

Props

As someone who carried balloons all the way to Maldives and took a picture jumping with them with the sun-kissed resort; pristine coral reefs and turquoise water in the background; I can’t stress my love for props and how much props can add to enhance the overall photo. Although you have to be careful of not taking too much focus away from the main subject, using props in the right way can add a sense of story and give the subject an extra layer of depth. These could include hats, umbrellas, mirrors, balloons or even everyday items such as a flower or a musical instrument. You can also find numerous videos and articles on the

Google how to use these props in your pictures and mesmerize your social media followers!

Getting the right photographer

Being photographed is an unnatural and stressful experience. Even the most expensive camera equipment and all your photography “wisdom” would go in vain if you are not relaxed and comfortable around the photographer. Make sure you take a friend or someone who is open to suggestions. And is willing to provide guidance like “Raise your chin a little” or “Look the other way for a fake candid!” to help you shamelessly pose without thinking twice.

Before-After

It is true that capturing photos in their natural setting may create striking portraits. Even so, adjusting the brightness and contrast, altering the hues and playing with the shadows can enhance your shots significantly. Editing platforms such as Aviary, Luminar, Lightroom and Photoshop are a great way to help you achieve this and take your photographs to the next level.

Explaining “Instagram Influencers” and how to become one

What’s the one application that the millennials and the Gen-Z are obsessed with in 2019? Surprisingly, it’s not Facebook. Although Facebook is definitely among the obvious answers, Instagram wins easily considering how fast its usage has gone up in the last couple of years. It is easy-to-use with a simple feed setup. Also, the term ‘followers’ sounds better than ‘friends’ who you barely talk to anyway.

Read more: Why aren’t the millennials reading anymore?

Instagram is widely accepted since people can be whatever they want to be here. Lately, people have been drawn more towards either following an influencer or being one. Now, who exactly is an ‘Influencer’?

Influencer: the individual whose effect on the purchase decision is in some way significant or authoritative. — Cambridge English Dictionary


Since the dawn of E-commerce and digital marketing, companies found it more convenient to market their products on Instagram. Mainly due to its rising popularity, promptness and mobility. Instagram was probably one of the pioneers in propagating the changing trends in lifestyle, tech and fashion. Primarily because it created a platform for its users to articulate their thoughts through filtered photos, videos and relevant captions.

This allowance, however, became an integral part of our lives with time. The people who stood out in providing meaningful, impactful and consumer-friendly reviews and recommendations were soon recognised as ‘Influencers’.

Read more: 6 Bangladeshi Instagrammers you should follow

The overwhelming follower base and somewhat easy access to being popular to a group of people excite the youth. Influencers are now given the equal amount of importance by companies as any other public figure reviewing or endorsing their product. It is indeed a good start for the people who genuinely feel they will be good at this. But a lot of people are clueless about ‘what it takes to be an Instagram influencer’.

Here’s an easy guide.

1. Target audience

It is imperative to set a target audience before you start. If your target audience are the people who love makeup and fashion, try and reach out to people with similar interests and be relevant with your content.

2. Unique approach

Uniqueness sells in Instagram so always consider being different from the influencers in the same field. Adequate research and audience friendly approach goes a long way. Don’t copy, don’t be boring.  

3.  Be proactive

Being responsive and reaching out to the followers who support you is important. If you care about your audience, show them and make sure to reply to your DMs appreciating your followers for taking the time to go through your feed.

4. Stay in touch with the trends

The changing trends in fashion and lifestyle in our generation might seem like a lot to take for many. It’s okay to not catch up with each and every one of them but it’s useful to stay in touch with some for your follower base.

5. Be transparent/neutral about products while reviewing

After you’ve gained a considerable number of followers as an influencer, chances are they’ll be inclined towards your opinion while buying or using any products they might buy. Some might take your words too seriously as well. It is very important to realize that your sincerity in this field will only make you a reliable source of information for the consumers. So try to be informative and as honest as possible while reviewing products.

Read more: Modest Influencers who rock Instagram.

Facebook to merge WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger

A spokesperson from social media giant Facebook has announced that the platform plans to merge messaging platforms WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger, according to a New York Times report.

The spokesperson claimed that the merger would deliver a “fast, simple, reliable and private” messaging platform intended to create “the best messaging experiences” for users. Although the apps are expected to remain distinct from one another, the core infrastructure will be combined into one, according to experts. The merger is expected to take place early next year even though no official details have been released.

Photo Courtesy: The Independent UK

Facebook acquired photo-sharing platform Instagram for approximately $1 billion (£761 million) in 2012, before taking over the messaging app WhatsApp in 2014 for an estimated $19.3 billion (£14.7bn).

The original founders of the app have since left Facebook, but the apps themselves have experienced dynamic growth in popularity. The decision to merge these platforms is contradictory to statements by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who stated the platforms would remain separate from Facebook.

One of the main concerns of the said merger is the privacy of users’ data. Given Facebook’s past and ongoing efforts to prove innocence against allegations of privacy breach, this merger can’t but attract scrutiny and arched eyebrows. It will be a technically challenging task to merge privacy configurations and data from three separate platforms.

The process might get shady given lack of user awareness regarding privacy issues. There is still a year’s time between now and the merger actually happening. Facebook needs to be absolutely crystal clear about the progress of their proceedings to retain user trust. As of now, we’re not quite sure how to feel about this and can only nervously await further proceedings.  

Modest influencers who rock Instagram

The one place where you can meet social influencers, talented photographers, artists, models and many more is Instagram. Each profile has something different to put out for their followers and this is where we get to see the individuality that resides upon each one of us. From the past few years, the Hijab community has successfully torn down all stereotypes and brought something new to the table. With charm and confidence, these women blend lifestyle and fashion only to bring out a new formula to the table!

Rock it all with Azrin Alom

The first one of the modest influencers on our list is the owner of Sciccoso, Azrin Alom is an entrepreneur, architect, mother, and a fashion blogger! This superwoman knows how to handle life the elegant way. With fresh ideas in mind for Sciccoso and new posts each week, she will definitely make you believe in having it all and still rocking it in your own way.

Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/azrinalom/?hl=en

Slay with Mumtahana Elahi

Modest influencers on instagram HiFi Public

Collaborating with companies like Sunsilk, Elle magazine, La Mode etc. Mumtahana Elahi has brought innovative ideas in Bangladeshi fashion industry with her magnetic personality. She has represented herself and the country in places including Singapore and Jakarta. Popularly known as Abayaholic on Instagram, her beige feed is an absolute pleasure to the eyes. Filled with fashion and lifestyle aesthetic if you want a change in your fashion this season, follow away because she is here to slay!

Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/abayaholic/?hl=en

Minimalistic-ally beautiful Aydha Mehnaz

Modest influencers on instagram HiFi Public

Fashion Marketing Strategist, Aydha Mehnaz believes in good work ethic and has an eye for creative corners everywhere. Currently studying in France, Aydha was born and raised in Bangladesh. She has a knack for flexible fashion ideas and has great tips for fashion and lifestyle. Her frequent participation in different Paris runways and fashion collaboration is what makes her different from the others. Her minimalistic feed will make you fall in love with the simple things in life. ‘

Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/aydhamehnaz/?hl=en

Fashion Website: https://www.aydhamehnaz.com/

Say Amen with Amena Khan!

A mother, wife and a fashion influencer, Amena has established her own fashion website and placed a name in the world of modest Instagrammers. Obsessed with skincare and fashion, Amena is all about a healthy lifestyle. She is globally known to be one of the most famous fashion influencers for giving her followers the confidence to be unapologetically loving towards themselves.

Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/amenakhan/?hl=en \

YouTube Link: https://www.youtube.com/user/Amenakin

Smile with Sayeeba Islam

Sayeeba

Known as Smiley Sayeeba, with currently about 10k subscribers on YouTube, Sayeeba has successfully established her contents with quirk, happiness, and fashion to her subscribers and followers. If you are a tea-holic and want your feed with great photos, subscribe away!

Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/smileysayeeba/?hl=en

YouTube Link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmljCKUl5xJnGDgwT6-O0sQ

Instagram has opened the horizons to different communities. These modest Instagrammers have put themselves on a position to not highlight their lifestyle, but also to share their fashion journey with the world. These beautiful ladies are creative content makers with brilliant ideas to showcase. Here’s to women who wrap their Hijabs with elegance and confidence!

IGTV: game changer or doomed to fail?

Instagram, one of the largest social media platforms with over 1 billion monthly active users, has now launched Instagram TV or IGTV – as you may have noticed by the little orange IGTV button on the top right corner of your updated Instagram home. IGTV is a standalone app – so, in a way, it is to Instagram what Facebook Messenger is to Facebook, but for videos instead of messages. Thankfully, you can also view videos on IGTV through the IGTV button on Instagram home and on users’ Instagram profiles, so you won’t have to feel excluded if you haven’t downloaded the IGTV app yet – unlike Facebook Messenger. What I found myself wondering when I first discovered the IGTV button on Instagram is, since we already have access to video stories on Instagram itself and other video sharing platforms such as YouTube, how much can the introduction of IGTV change the online video world as we know it?

While at first glance IGTV videos looked a lot like Instagram stories (only longer), it turned out to be much more than that. Any Instagram user can create a channel and share videos lasting up to 10 minutes (much more satisfying than having to crop your videos to a mere 30 seconds as is on Instagram) – and for users with larger follower bases, that limit is an hour. While stories can only be 15 seconds per clip and last only 24 hours on your profile, IGTV videos are more like creating YouTube videos, only vertical and filling in your entire screen. Moreover, IGTV, unlike YouTube, allows its users to browse videos and see comments whilst watching videos at the same time – a feature YouTube users have so far been deprived of.

The idea of vertical videos is personally the most exciting aspect of IGTV to me, as this gives way to developing a whole new range of filmmaking techniques that have been largely undiscovered thus far. Film-making, traditionally done in a 16:9 aspect ratio, has always been so to mimic how the human eye views the world – horizontally. However, in the 21st century, our smartphones have gotten us quite accustomed to a more vertical view of the world, and so the new vertical experience reinforces the feeling that this is still the virtual world – a feeling that is very new, and perhaps weird, to us. Even having to rotate to view YouTube videos on full-screen can sometimes feel like too much of a hassle – that’s how much we have gotten used to viewing videos on our phones vertically. So vertical videos on IGTV not only seem convenient (albeit takes some getting used to at first), but create the scope for more experimenting for content-creators and film-makers. In fact, we had already seen a lot of vertical music videos from popular artists in 2017, and now that IGTV has created a platform build specifically for vertical viewing, there is a much broader prospect for those videos now on IGTV. The new vertical viewing experienced introduced in this platform can therefore be a huge game-changer.

What makes IGTV even easier to use is that Instagram is already a mass favorite social media platform. Popular instagrammers won’t have to worry about starting out on a new platform on IGTV but rather building up on an already existing platform. Until now, anyone who wanted to expand using both the video and photography media had to maintain YouTube and Instagram separately – having to build a follower base in both of these platforms. With IGTV now opening Instagram up to a larger range of video content, this changes the entire dynamic – users now have the opportunity to focus on only one platform, Instagram, for both videography and photography rather than having to spread their resources across several platforms. Similarly, users won’t have to switch back and forth on popular YouTube/Instagram personalities but focus on one platform only.

So the real question it all boils down to is : what does this mean for YouTube?

The launch of IGTV almost unquestionably challenges the most popular video website we have, but how much does it really challenge? On one hand, with IGTV being a vertical platform, the type of content that can be shared on IGTV has to be very differently created than what can be shared on YouTube. In this sense, content-creators who want to retain their quality might want to treat these two websites very differently. But what can impact YouTube about IGTV isn’t how the content-creators see it, but how their users see it – and frankly, IGTV has made its platform much more accessible and handy than YouTube is at the moment.

And even if IGTV does gain traction from its users, will it really affect YouTube all that much? IGTV works largely in the same way as YouTube – you have to make your videos first and you can only use the website to share your content, so it has a real scope at competing with YouTube. But to what extent it can really do this can only be determined by what content IGTV is best suited for. YouTube is more of an all-size-fits-all kind of platform – everything made for a horizontal screen (which is mostly everything) is up there, and everything that wasn’t made for a horizontal screen can be uploaded too. In this case, IGTV’s vertical take on things end up giving it the shorter end of the stick – it limits the range of content that can be uploaded there, and so limits how much it can actually challenge YouTube.

In the social media world, Instagram has made a big name already, a name that is right up there with YouTube. Starting out as a platform meant exclusively for photos, Instagram has achieved major success with the introduction of Instagram stories as well, and now with the launch of IGTV, we have no doubt that this will be big as well. What we can only wait to see is, how much of the YouTube territory can IGTV actually conquer? One thing is for sure: it is a huge relief that the new Instagram update is nothing like the Snapchat update that ruined everything, but rather brings hope, excitement, and perhaps even a new era of video culture.