My late husband was my personal photographer. So after he passed away, I had to find whoever that is available to take my photos. I usually plan ahead of time to ask my step-daughter, or a few friends to help me with during the weekends. Then I started my solo travel journey and I realized that my selfie skills are so limited. In order to get some great photos, I have to learn to ask strangers to take photos of me. As you can imagine, it was not easy at the beginning. What if they say no? What if they are bad people? What if they drop my camera and damage it? Lol, the struggles are real. But after nearly two years of practice, I think I found some tricks to find the right person and train them quickly for my photos. All the photos you see in this post were taken by strangers, so the photo credit goes to those unsung heroes! Lol!
1. Look For the Right Person
I usually look for a couple or a group of people with relaxing body laungage. If they are in a hurry, or in a bad mood, the chance of helping me with photos defiantly will be small. I have found that the best people to ask are usually younger generation from 20+ to 30+, as they have a sound understanding of how technology works, how to hold a camera steady for a good shot, and what photo layout that is good for Instagram. Better yet look for someone holding a DSLR camera that means they’ll know what they are doing.
I have not personally encounter any bad person yet. But I know in a lot of touristy places there’s always thieves on the lookout for an easy target. So I have to be careful with who I trust my camera with. As I mentioned above, I usually do a quick evaluation about the people I think may help me. I often look at their facial expression to see if it is relaxed or kind, their body language if confident or depressed. Their style is another way for me to tell if I can trust them as well. For example, backpacks, sporty shoes, camera, that means they are tourist as well so probably harmless. If I travel in big cities, I usually pick well dressed people since they can afford what they are wearing, there is no need to worry they will take my camera, right? Lol! Of course another thing as a single woman, I have to make sure the person I ask will not want to harm me in other ways. That is way I pick couples or a group people mixed with both genders.
3. Introduce Yourself
Now that you have your target, the next step is to introduce yourself. My typical line will be “Excuse me! I am a blogger and need some photos for my blog, could you please take a few photos of me?” There was only one time I got rejected. They were two Chinese girls and their facial expression was like “What do you want?” Lol. I am a happy person in general, so I think my big smile, talkative personality helped with making it easy for others too! 😉
4. Give as much direction as possible
I am not so camera savvy and the one I use just points and shoot type. So it is pretty easy for others to use. I give them less than one-minute training about how to use my camera and what exactly I want from that shot. After the first photo, I do ask to take a look first and then see if I need more shots.;) So it is very important that at the begining you ask them that you will need 5 minutes of their time to get a few more different angles.
5. Exchange the favor
In an upside note, approaching people that are alone as well can sometimes be easier than people who are in a group because they are hoping to find someone to take their photos as well. Even if the people with someone else, I still ask if they need me to take photos of them.
6. Say Thank you!
Well, this last point is really just good manners. Big smile and a sense of humor, makes everyone’s day better, right?
Do you ever ask strangers to take a photo for you? What are your best tips? Have you had some funny encounters with strangers taking photos with your head cut off? lol!
Photo credit: Grace Liang
Thank you for reading! If you like what you read, please comment below, or share it with your friends. Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Twitter for new updates. For all the amazing fashion/beauty and lifestyle products I share, also follow me on Instagram. Remember to check out my Instagram stories daily to know me better as a person. Finally, don’t forget to follow me on YouTube for my fashion/beauty and lifestyle videos. Have a great day and see you soon!
|TODAY’S LINKUP PARTY:|
colorandgrace.com occasionally receives vendor/brand sponsorships for mentioning their products and services.