PictureThanks Jeff Foster for this!
Over the past couple of weeks I have been thinking about this "selfie" picture concept a little bit more (than usual). ;-) 

Yes, I have taken selfies before. Who hasn't? We are all very quick with that camera, snapping that picture of us, most of the times part of the arm which is holding the camera, still in it. But there is so much more to a selfie than that... 



I started taking aerial pictures of myself not too long ago but I don't even remember how it started or why. I do, however, remember flying and always looking down at us (through my first person view goggles), thinking that I look so small, like an ant. 

*** I did find my very first aerial selfie - I took it in Phoenix when I was there as part of NASA's Destination Station. I uploaded that picture on the bottom.***

Here are my thoughts on this: 

The "Selfie Phenomena" has been fueled by two developments; first the technological advances in cameras. Moving from film cameras to digital cameras, making it so easy and inexpensive taking picture after picture. Furthermore, today almost every cell phone has a camera built in, giving almost everyone an opportunity to take pictures. 

The second reason why selfies have been "blooming" is because of social media. We have become a society which loves to share our everyday adventures with the world. And that includes pointing the camera at yourself and pressing the shutter button. 

The definition of a traditional "selfy" or "selfie" is: "Taking a picture of yourself, holding the camera at arms length." 

I believe this to be too simple of a definition as there is also the Mirror-Selfie, where a person is taking a picture, holding the camera, in front of a mirror. Here the camera is not at arms length, as it is pointed at the mirror, capturing the reflection in the mirror. Since the majority of good and big mirrors are in bathrooms, most of the times you can also see a toilet, a shower curtain and other bathroom items. 

Furthermore, the Self-timer Selfie should be included here too. Even though this one is the more sophisticated selfie, the end result is the same. Here, however, you have to have either the right equipment (camera, tripod or another good place to put your camera down) or then have an app on your smartphone which will let you set a timer for the picture. 

The Scale of Selfies? 

So I thought to myself, is there a a "Selfie Scale" - what's the worst selfie that could be taken? So, here is my personal "Selfie Scale":
Picture

The worst? 

On my scale it has to be the "Bathroom Selfie". There is absolutely nothing appealing to me. Not even if you have an incredibly awesome toilet seat.. 

Picture

The "Mirror Selfie" (unless taken in the bathroom, then go back up one) is the second lowest selfie in my humble opinion. What this tells me is that you have an amazing hair day, or just gotten an awesome new dress, but you don't actually have anybody near you who could take a proper picture. 

Picture


Then there is the selfie often found taken on a beach or a lake during sunbathing. The one where the camera operator holds the camera just below the chin, taking a picture of the rest of the body, showing how relaxed he or she is on that beach. I call this one the "Chest-to-Toe Beach Selfie"

Picture

The "Cool Background Selfie" is the picture of yourself in front of either a cool background or in front of group of people. They may or may not be your friends. 

Picture
Now we are getting to the better half on the scale. The first selfie that I actually like is the one where you really have no time to ask somebody, or find somebody, to take a picture of you; that's the "Surprise-Selfie". You don't plan that one ahead - the right moment just happens and will not happen for much longer. Like you standing in front of that celebrity getting into the limo or the rainbow behind you selfie. 

Picture
As we are getting closer to the top of the scale, I have found that a good "Aerial-Selfie" is actually a fun thing to do. But this one takes also a little more equipment - like an aerial photography platform (a DJI Vision for example). If done at a cool location, this can actually make the shot even more interesting. It can provide depth and scale in your picture. If you are standing on top of a cliff taking a picture of the cliff and you are just this tiny person, it gives actually a size comparison. 

Picture
And the mother of all selfies - the one category that wins over and over again - is the "In-Space-Selfie". And there are only a few hundred people who have had the opportunity to take that one shot. And they are, hands down, the most coolest, most awesome and most superb selfies in the history of photography. Sometimes they have Earth in the background, sometimes only the blackness of space. And sometimes the helmet visor is down, creating a reflection in the visor of the camera and what's behind the camera. Like this one by Astronaut and friend Clay Anderson! 

See some more incredible Astronaut selfies here

A few Aerial Selfies 

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My 1st selfie - February 26, 2013 - Phoenix, AZ





 


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