Getting the Perfect Photo

When it comes down to the one thing you can do to get more responses, updating your photos is at the top of the list. Invest the time, effort, and planning in getting great photos for your profile. You'll be rewarded with more responses.

If you want to improve your photo profile, consider the following.

• Take a picture when you're relaxed and having fun. When you're relaxed and enjoying yourself, it shows in your face. When you're tense, nervous, or anxious to make a good first impression, the strain also shows.

• Be spontaneous. Spontaneous photos are better than planned photos, because they capture more of the "natural you." Have a friend who's a budding photographer bring a camera along to a fun excursion and take photos. Try to forget about the camera. The minute you're self-conscious, you'll stiffen up and take a poorer photo.

• Good lighting or good editing. Fortunately, digital photo editing can correct many problems, including red-eye, underexposure, or overexposure. Don't let that be an excuse to take a bad photo, though. The best photos are taken under the right lighting and right conditions.

Try to have your photo taken in natural lighting, with enough shadow to soften your features. If your photo doesn't turn out as you'd like, don't feel bad about modifying it with one of the many photo editing software programs out there. (One of my favorites is a free program by Google called Picasa. Download it at www.picasa.com.)

• Emphasize your best features. It goes without saying that you should choose a flattering photo. Most people don't realize, though, that the photo shouldn't just flatter your features; it should also flatter your personality! Photos taken with animals, with kids, or with groups of friends will show your social side off to best advantage.

• Tell a story. The best pictures tell a story. Ask yourself what each of the photos you've picked tells about you. Is it a story that intrigues you?

Continue reading here: What Next

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