Smile! You’re…not on Candid Camera

TipsIn a recent post we showed you how easily you can ‘fix’ a picture that gets uploaded to your touchPoint database and is sideways or upside down. As a followup, let’s talk about how to get good pictures and what is a good picture for our purposes.

A good photo for TouchPoint is one of a person’s head and shoulders preferably with the person smiling. We want the photo to give those viewing it, whether in the application, via an online directory, or in a printed directory, a good idea of what that person looks like. It needs to be close up enough to do that.

We recommend that you use theTouchPoint Mobile App on your phone to take the pictures so you can upload them right to the person’s record. A staff member can easily visit various classes and use his phone to capture lots of pictures in a short time. Phones now have great little cameras! And, by using your phone, you can easily get the person whose photo you are taking in the right light and the proper distance from the camera. Remember – you want head and shoulders – forget about the knees and toes!

Here are  a few more pointers for capturing good photos:

  • Avoid having the subject stand with his back against a wall, as the flash will create a shadow.
  • Go ahead and use the flash, especially if you are under fluorescent lights.
  • Have the person’s head take up most of the frame with a little space above the head with the full neck and the top of the shoulders showing.
  • Keep the background simple, not anything too busy.

If you want your subject to smile (and I’m sure you do), try this little trick:

Tell the subject to stare at something just to his left and to turn and look at you only when you say the cue. Once he is staring off into the distance say “marshmallow”. He will turn toward you, but with a smile. And you can capture a nice photo that will not look stiff or posed.Any word he is not expecting will work. Just use your imagination to put the person at ease and capture a smile from him.

Read more about photos in TouchPoint.

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