Monthly Archives: November 2017

Flattering Self Portraits

Clicking Self-Portraits – 3 Basic Pointers

When you click yourself, you can go all whacky, zany and mad without getting conscious or awkward about it! Stick your tongue out, roll your eyes! Pose in a way in which you wouldn’t if people were around you. You might get conscious sticking your pout out when somebody is clicking you. But click yourself, and you can reveal your ‘shexy-n-shmoky’ side without inhibitions! It isn’t as difficult as it may seem to be. Clicking great self-portraits is about as easy as clicking portraits of other people. There are a few basic differences though. If you bear these differences in mind, there is nothing that can stop you from taking a flattering picture of yourself on your own.

#1 – Which Camera?
You can click yourself with your digital camera, with a webcam, with a handy-cam, or with the camera on your phone. So which one to choose? Decide based on the purpose. If you are bored and want to click yourself simply to pass time – go for the camera on your phone. It is handy and easy. Plus there are all kinds of applications for instant editing. But you would have to be careful about the angle as you would have to hold the phone yourself. If you want to click a proper picture – to flaunt your new hair-cut, or a new bikini even! – go for your digital camera. Almost all digital cameras available in the market have a self-timer, so you can have multiple gos at it. The same effect can be got with a webcam too. However, a picture taken with a digital camera would definitely be of a better quality than one taken on a webcam. A handy-cam would be nice if you want an unusual angle, as I will elaborate below. A webcam, handy-cam and digital camera can also be mounted on a table or a shelf, so your hands would be free.

#2 – What Angle?
The angle you choose to click a self-portrait is the single most important consideration! It has to be nothing less than perfect. Period. The angle can make or break your picture. A tip would be to get a judgment of the angle at which you hold or place your camera by first posing in front of a mirror. This may feel stupid, but it is important if you want a good picture. The wrong angle can make your nose look fat, your eyes look sunken, or your cheeks too chubby! Would you want a picture like that? I am guessing not. Get an idea of the angle at which you need to hold the camera and the level up to which you need to raise your hand. Click a few trial snaps, and then click the final one. It is bound to come awesome! However, clicking yourself outdoors leaves you completely at the mercy of trial-and-error – unless you actually move a mirror out from your room and into your garden; and this is exactly where it would be great if you have a handy-cam. You can turn the LCD panel completely through 180º and actually see yourself and how you will look in the picture. This will give you better judgment and enough room to experiment with the angle.

#3 – Lighting?
The type of lighting you choose to click a picture can totally make or break it. Find out which would suit best for the kind of picture you want to click. Some general tips are – never stand under the light source when clicking yourself indoor. Your facial features will cast shadows all over your face – it looks horrible! Always stand with the light in your face. I love clicking pictures in natural light, and so I always run to the window if I want to take a self-portrait in the day time. The main trick here is to remember to hold the camera in such a way that it does not itself cast a shadow upon your face. Make sure you do not hold the camera in the path of the light. This is especially important while clicking picture lying down on the bed or in the garden. However, in the garden, shadows can be put to creative use. Clicking a picture under a tree will cast interesting shadows as the sunlight streams through the tree. It looks really charming.

Journalism Schools

As aspiring journalists everyone has dreams, ranging from being the next big name after Woodward and Bernstein, to having a couple of Pulitzer awards to their credit. Journalism has been for years now, the preferred career for men and women who imagine themselves fighting for the rights of the downtrodden, exposing corrupt groups, and bringing about a change in society. Top schools go a long way in helping you achieve this dream. Most hardened journalists will tell you how you cannot learn journalism, and how whatever you learn at these schools will have to be unlearned as soon as you step out into the field. While this may be true, graduating from a top journalism school will help you get that big break you need to start off in the career of your choice in the mass media.

List of Best Journalism Schools

If you want to become a journalist, getting through to one of the top and most sought-after journalism schools in the country should be high in your priority list. In this article, we give you a list of those journalism schools that feature on the top of most rankings. This list is a compilation based on different rankings and studies as conducted by magazines and research groups. The top schools that featured on those lists have made it through to our list of most prestigious journalism schools.

University of Missouri
For several years now, the University of Missouri has been named one of the top 10 journalism schools in the country in several different independently conducted rankings. The School of Journalism affiliated to the university is the oldest journalism school in the country and was founded in 1908. The school offers six Bachelor’s degrees and one Master’s degree program with almost 20 different specializations to choose from. Students in the program are trained in radio broadcasting, television, digital media, and print media and work with several publications, the primary of which are Columbia Missourian and Global Journalist.

Columbia University
Students from almost all over the world dream of getting into this prestigious journalism school which constantly ranks among the best journalism schools in not only the country, but the world. It only has a graduate program in journalism with a ten month Master of Science in Journalism, a nine month Master of Arts in Journalism and a PhD program. With courses in digital media, news editing, writing, broadcast journalism, magazine writing, etc., the college also conducts seminars and workshops to provide students with practical exposure.

Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute
The Arthur L.Carter Journalism Institute is affiliated to the New York University and offers a graduate program in journalism for students who are looking for a career in journalism. They have specialized courses in business reporting, conflict reporting, and reportage focusing on different parts of the world. The college helps students get internships with different media houses that enables them to put their knowledge to practical use.

Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop literally needs no introduction. The use of this incredible photo-editing software has slowly crept down from the elite likes of graphic designers and photographers, to everyday application at the hands of the layman, so much so that its name is now commonly used as a verb that’s synonymous to the very act of photo manipulation!

When such a powerful, versatile tool that is capable of manipulating images to an unbelievable extent is available at one’s disposal, one can’t help but wonder what is the need at all to look for a replacement? Even so, here are some reasons.

✏ Firstly, although Photoshop is the ultimate right hand of any graphic artist, 80% of the features it provides would be redundant to those who just use it to create the perfect profile/display picture. What they would actually need is a good photo-correction tool that comes with a handful of Instagram-esque filters.

✏ Secondly, being aware of the indispensability of this software in many industries, Adobe Systems has recently changed the distribution strategy of Photoshop from purchase to subscription, with the introduction of their Creative Cloud program.
Paying an exorbitant monthly or yearly subscription fee to use it would work out to be quite expensive, not to mention wasteful, for a person who wants to use Photoshop merely to edit a couple of photographs before posting them on social media websites.

Therefore, it is time for majority of the users of Photoshop (especially those who are merely enthusiasts and do not actually need to use this software as part of their professional work) to jump ship to a different photo-editing solution, unless they want to burn a deep hole in their pockets.

Fortunately, a number of software are available, of which some are either reasonably priced or even free, while others are completely web-based, so they do not need to be downloaded. Here is a list of our picks, sorted into categories.

Alternatives to Adobe
Photoshop Elements 13
Developer Adobe Systems
Type of Distribution Download (purchase)
OS Requirements Windows 7 and above, OS X 10.8 and above
Price Photoshop Elements 13 Only
To download → USD 99.99
To upgrade from a previous version → USD 79.99

Photoshop Elements 13 and Premiere Elements 13 (Software Bundle)
To download → USD 149.99
Description and Key Features Thankfully for Photoshop addicts who find it difficult getting out of their Photoshop comfort zone, Adobe has provided a solution to the problem in the form of a stripped-down, lightweight version of their flagship photo-editing software, called Photoshop Elements.

Adobe Photoshop Elements is a one-time purchase, and it contains enough features to gladden the heart of any amateur.

What’s new in Photoshop Elements 13:-
♦ A tool especially designed to create profile, and cover pictures for the most widespread social network today, Facebook.
♦ A tool that suggests ways to crop a picture.
♦ Photomerge Compose: A tool with the ability to pull elements from various pictures and put them together in a different picture, in a simple, copy-paste style, to create new, realistic-looking photographs.
♦ Guided Edits: A tool that allows users to very easily create grayscale (black and white) images that have a single color popping out.
♦ A tool that can remove unnecessary objects from photographs, and then fills in the background intelligently, based on other elements in the image.
♦ The availability of a number of filters (effects).
♦ Support for the new Retina HD monitors for Mac, and access to online Help resources.
Links Adobe Photoshop Elements 13 for either OS platform

Senior Picture Ideas for Boys

Choosing the Photographer
The best and most creative pictures of you can be generated if you get yourself photographed by a different photographer. If the same guy clicks photographs for all the guy, then it is natural for all of them to appear similar, or have an underlying similar quality. Therefore, choose a photographer who will not only be creative, but will also make you comfortable, and bring out the best in you that will reflect in your pictures.
Choosing a Location
The location is very essential, and will make a lot of difference in the quality of the photograph. For instance, rugged outdoor locations will look highly aesthetic, such as in the thicket of trees in the woods, by a lake against some rocks, in the ruins of an old building, or against the mountains where one would usually go trekking. On the other hand, indoor locations could provide a more versatile backdrop as they can be created or used in their authenticity. Your school library, the mall, your own house, the school classroom, cafeteria, etc. can all be chosen as appropriate locations for your pictures. A basic tip when it comes to deciding these locations, is to choose one that is reminiscent of some great memories. Utilizing such elements of photography largely adds value of the photograph.
Choosing an Outfit
The clothing for the pictures will depend a lot on the location of the photograph. However, the basic idea is to be comfortable in whatever you wear. Don’t get too formally or uncomfortably dressed, or wear clothes that you don’t like, or else you would regret it later in your life when you see these pictures. Even if you wear the most worn out pair of your favorite jeans you will feel comfortable, and this will help you come up with a great photograph. For the outdoors, cargos or jeans with your favorite t-shirt and a jacket will do well. The weather will also matter. You cannot be dressed in a summer outfit during the winters. Wear a simple cardigan with a pair of jeans and a good pair of sneakers or shoes. If you are getting yourself clicked indoors, you may want to be formally dressed, but there is no need for that. Senior pictures are meant to capture you exactly the way you were during those days. If formal has been your style all along, then stick to it. If not, don’t try it now.