I've always been intrigued by self-portraits. I think they reveal so much about a person, their life, their thoughts, their emotions. I've done a few, some pretty good ones, but some really, really, REALLY bad ones, too. Plus, I always feel silly and horribly self-conscious when I set out to try and capture myself.
That's why I always do self-portraits when no one is home.
The number one thing that I struggle with when attempting self-portraits is achieving sharp focus. I usually put a light stand where I plan on being, stand right next to it and measure from my eyes over to where the nearest knob on the stand is with my finger. I then go back to my camera and set the focus point on the knob, go back to the stand and place a piece of gaffer's tape underneath to act as my mark. I then get my remote, double check the focus, then very carefully remove the light stand and then place my feet exactly on that piece of tape, aim my remote at the camera and proceed to hope and pray that all that rigamarole worked.
Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't and then I start all over again.
BUT! Today I remembered that I had a Nikon camera app on my phone that I've been reading about lately on blogs and Facebook group pages and decided to give it a go. I had just received my latest book order from Amazon and had plopped down on the kitchen floor to decide which book to dive into first (that really is the hardest part of getting a new book order. Same with a brand new pile of library books!). I thought that this little moment might make a good self-portrait project. This little corner that I'm sitting in is my "spot" in the kitchen: it's where I sit after my runs to gulp down Gatorade, it's where I sit and pet the dog, it's where I sit to talk to Meghan when she comes over, it was where I was when my BIL called to let me know that my sister had entered Hospice and she wasn't expected to live past the week. I sat in that little corner and wept for two hours after he hung up that afternoon. This little corner is very much a part of my daily living.
I set up my tripod on the kitchen bar with a sandbag anchoring it above me with my 24-70mm lens on my Nikon D750 set to 35mm, ISO 1250, f/2.8, 1/80 sec. I had gone into my camera's menu and had activated the WiFi on the camera, then I went into the settings on my iPhone and opened up the Nikon app and set the WiFi on there as well. This was the first time I had ever used my phone as a remote, and I am super excited to say that it worked like a charm.
You can change focus on the phone screen and use the home button to activate the camera's shutter (you might see my finger in some of the pictures below hitting the home button) and presto! chango! you just took a picture with your phone. I'm pretty sure Canons have the same sort of app since those were the cameras most mentioned in the articles I had been reading. And those of you that are reading this, you might already have known about this, but like I said, I had never used the app to the fullest before, but I know from now on, I most definitely will.
And for the record, I still haven't made up my mind as to which book to dive into first!