Wednesday, 27 June 2007

You know you have too much spare time when taking pictures of yourself is a legitimate use of an afternoon

One of the side effects of this budget is that I often find myself attempting to make my own entertainment. This has two major things going for it: (1) it's free, and (2) it doesn't require me to leave the flat and brace the random assortment of hostile elements which constitute an Edinburgh summer. Unfortunately, however, I suck at entertaining myself. I am not, for a start, remotely entertaining. And I lack that only-child knack of revelling in one's own company. When left in my own company I...well, do diddly squat, really. But not today! No, today I instead decided to - prepare to be underwhelmed - investigate a question that's been troubling me for some time: why do I photograph so badly?

I am weirdly, almost laws-of-physics-defyingly, unphotogenic. I generally come out looking like a sort of cross between Stephen Hawking and Ruud van Nistelrooy, if you can imagine such a creature. My brother would doubtless argue that this is a fairly accurate representation, but I choose instead to believe that, by freak coincidence, all the cameras in the Western hemisphere suffer from some kind of me-defacing glitch. However, after an embarrassing number of abortive attempts (does anyone else have problems getting their head in a picture, or is that just me?) I think I've finally found a way to look halfway presentable in photos!

Before:

"Nobody loves me, everybody hates me, I think I'll go and eat worms..."

After:

All the better to eat you with, my dear...

(I did only say "halfway" - you weren't expecting miracles, were you?) The trick is to smile manically. As in, literally manically. Open your eyes as wide as they can go and grin inanely, as though you were auditioning for the part of the Big Bad Wolf in a particularly cheesy musical adaptation of Little Red Riding Hood, to be performed to an audience comprised entirely of the partially sighted. It feels ridiculous, obviously, but somehow (humour me here) the resulting photo ends up as a subdued version of the caricature-like expression. Having said that, it has yet to be seen if this method actually works when the camera's being wielded by someone other than my left hand...

And in a belated attempt to keep this post relevant to the budget, this week's £10 is still intact! Though this may say more about my laziness (see plan not to leave flat for duration of twenty-first century) than my self-control.

Edit: Alas! According to Mike I've over-estimated the subduing effect, and still look crazed in the "After" photo. Oh well, back to the drawing board...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

um .. i think you are pretty


from Puggle

Carrie said...

That's totally what I do in pictures! Yay for manic smiles.

jorth said...

I think you look sweet! And at least you can take a self portrait without exposing the internet to your grotty bathroom mirror, a la me!