How to take yoga pictures for Instagram: The Art of Yoga Selfie

I often get questions on my Instagram about how I get my yoga photos taken. 90% of the time, I have my friends as my photographer, and I am always grateful for their help. However, not everyone has a friend who can help you take yoga photos all the time! So today I am going to talk about how to take yoga pictures on your own without needing a photographer!

How to take yoga pictures for Instagram: The Art of Yoga Selfie (Instagram @dans.la.pluie)

Tip 1: Find the right location

Outdoor:

You probably saw a lot of yoga pictures with beach, sea, or forest as background. Outdoor yoga pictures combine yoga with the nature, which gives the pictures more life. While you may not be able to get on a plane and go to an exotic location, perhaps you can try a local park where there’s a lot of green in the background or a rooftop where you find an angle that has the sky behind you. Some of my own yoga pictures that I really like were taken during sunrise or sunset. The sunrise and sunset provide breathtaking natural backdrops.

Indoor:

If outdoor photo-shooting is not an option, you can simply set up a good indoor environment. Try to make sure your background is clean and clear any clutter. A white background is great for portfolio shots, but you can also look for backdrops that can add a different element to your photo. See some nice backdrop options.

In my post “DIY Yoga Sanctuary: How to Create a Home Yoga Space“, you will find my tips about creating beautiful yoga space at home.

Tip 2: Leverage the lighting

Whether you’re outside or inside, lighting is certainly the key to a successful picture.

If you are shooting outdoors, aim to shoot in diffuse sunlight so the lighting isn’t as harsh. And be aware of where the shadows are hitting and whether you’re standing in the shade. If you’re shooting indoors, add some sort of light diffuser, and the results can be pretty heavenly! No matter whether it’s outdoor or indoor, you want to be in the light and the direction that it’s coming from. You want to be facing the light and have your head angled, not necessarily up, but flat so you can see the light.

Tip 3: Dress your best

When shooting yoga poses, being able to see the lines of the body clearly is very important. When you take yoga pictures, you should avoid loose clothing because it obscures the lines of the pose. It is better to wear clothing that fits tightly and shows the contours of the body. Even though it might feel embarrassing, it will give a better visual impact. In terms of color, generally, black clothing makes the body look thinner and white clothing does the opposite.

You don’t have to compromise your taste of fashion when you take yoga pictures. As long as you get the right fitting and color, you can be creative and bold when you choose what to wear.

Tip 4: Pick the right pose

I always recommend that you choose poses that you can do well when you take yoga pictures. Because if your alignment or technique is off, it will show clearly in the photo. Also, you are better off doing a pose that is easy for you because you will look calmer and more grounded. Don’t push yourself too hard to get into a pose your body isn’t ready for. Be where you are today. The next time you try the same pose for a yoga selfie, you’ll get to see just how far you have come!

And never forget to warm up your body in preparation for the asana!

Tip 5: Set the timer

If you don’t have a tripod for your camera or phone, you can set it up on a timer and place it on blocks, furniture, or rocks to get the vantage point you want. Generally speaking, shooting from below makes the photo appear more powerful. It takes at least a few seconds to take the pictures, therefore you’ll want to be in a pose that you’re strong at.

Tip 6: Have fun

Remember: It’s just you doing your yoga, and you happen to be sharing it with everyone. The camera should record the moments when you are happy and confident – and that will make the selfie much more beautiful.

Tip 7: Go easy on the editing

If all goes well with the lighting, you shouldn’t have to do too much to the photo.

Here are a few small steps you can follow when editing photos:

    • Check if anything needs to be cropped out.
    • Adjust the brightness, contrast, saturation, and luminance levels very slightly. The photo apps pre-installed in your computer or smartphone should be enough for these tasks.
    • If you are looking for studio quality photos, you can use professional photo editing software like Photoshop. To learn how to use Photoshop is actually not that terrifying. If you want to turn your Instagram into a successful yoga photo blog, investing time to learn a useful skill is probably worth it. For beginners, I recommend Learn Photo Editing. It’s a photoshop tutorial that can quickly give all basic knowledge of Photoshop you need.

So there you have it! Grab your camera (or phone) and get snapping. What else has worked well (or not so well) for you when you take yoga pictures? Share your tips in the comments below!

 

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