Taking engagement ring 'selfies'
It's not enough to just say what happened on the weekend. Or who you ran into at your 20-year high school reunion. Or that you're pregnant. Or that you just made wine into homemade sparkling with the Soda Stream.
Social media demands we back our said reality with actual reality - in short, 'pic or it didn't happen'.
Selfies? Love 'em. Instagram? I'm on it more than Facebook. A significant percentage of the apps I download are photo-related. My camera roll is full of pictures of my newly-acquired hand-me-down cat (long story) and my nephews.
I've also noticed a fresh crop of articles recently on how to take the best selfie.
But one got my attention.
How to take an engagement ring selfie.
Bless those bridal websites. But this wasn't just how to take an engagement ring selfie but Top 10 Tips on how to take one. Ten.
I mean, you're photographing a ring on your own hand, not photographing an awkward young woman trying to look sexy while in a water tank with a snake on Next Top Model (remember that episode?).
Here is the list of tips for taking a selfie of your engagement ring "by following the guidelines and seeing how these ring selfiepros handled their moments of glory."
1. Lighting is everything - get outside or set up your shot near a window. Flourescents and yellow bulb lights aren't much better. Trust us - you want the real deal sunlight!
Trust us! Stop bugging your photographer friends to borrow one of those foil-looking umbrella things and go, not the traditionalselfie studio, aka, the bathroom, and go outside.
2. Know Thy Ring. Experiment with the angle of your shot so you capture the most amazing qualities of your ring. Love the unique setting? Take a photo on an angle so everyone can see it! Infatuated with the shape of your stone? Try an overhead shot (but remember, skip the flash!).
This reminds me of the rifle monologue in Full Metal Jacket, except with a twist: This is my engagement ring. There are many others like it, but this one is mine. My engagement ring is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. Without me, my engagement ring is useless. Without my engagement ring, I am useless.
Consider giving your engagement ring a ladies name to really get to know it. Know thy ring. Know it.
3. Get your nails done. Everyone wants to see the ring. No one wants to see your hangnails. If your fiance caught you with a surprise proposal and you're due for a manicure, but just can't wait...put on a little lotion and get creative with your pose. Hold hands with your fiance, frame your nails out of the shot or do a fist pump pose at the camera!
Because ladies, *clutches pearls*, no one wants to see you ruining your engagement ring selfie with an unmanicured fingernail. If you haven't dropped $30 at your local Professionail, or pulled an at-home Sally Hansen job, you can always crop your dirty talons out of the photo.
Kudos for the fist pump.
4. Scout an exciting background - your keyboard is not the only background choice. Unleash your inner photo stylist! Find an Instagram-worthy skyline, latte or patterned pillow to serve as the backdrop of your ring selfie.
Finally. Something for the hipsters. The casual-but-oh-so-orchestrated picture of your new sparkler while clutching a cup of chino is very 'Oh this? Yeah, this happened, I guess. #BRB, my organic chia seed banana bread is ready'.
But really, there is nothing more satisfying to post a pic of your engagement ring only to have your mates asking you how much you scored that chevron-patterned IKEA pillow in the background for.
5. Go the distance. Avoid the zoom on your camera - physically moving your phone will make a less pixelated photo. If you're using an iPhone, set up your shot and then tap the screen to focus the lens. Avoid shaky shots by pushing the buttons on your earbuds to snap a photo instead of tapping your screen!
Now this is some good advice. Move the object or your camera, don't use the zoom. Seriously, it'll look like you've taken it while trying to bust a move to Slice of Heaven while sipping straight from a bottle of Riccadonna.
In fact, this whole listicle could have been just two tips - this one and the first tip.
Oh, and the fist pump.
6. Strike a (flattering) pose. Say goodbye to creepy hands by relaxing your fingers, adding a prop or resting your hands on your new fiance's arm. Avoid shots that highlight every pore and strand of hair on your hands by tilting the camera at an angle instead of shooting straight on.
Some people are just born with creepy hands and no amount of relaxation will remedy their Sarah Jessica Parker quality.
I recommend using a hand-puppet to hide your shameful pores and hairs.
Weird how the hairy arm of your fiancé is somehow OK.
7. Take lots of pics but upload only one! You want your ring to stand out and look as awesome as it is. Skip the collages and pick one great shot to feature. You've got a lot of wedding planning ahead, so don't give your followers any excuses to hide your feed.
Tsk tsk! What's a selfie when you're only allowed to upload one?
No really, please, express your happiness, but express it too aggressively and you risk what all brides dread - banishment to the hidden newsfeed.
But who cares? You'll never actually know if someone hides your feed anyway, so post two pics.
To hell with it, post three.
8. Edit it in an app! Experiment with the crop, contrast, saturation and sharpness to get the very best from your digital photo.
Right. So screw tip seven about your letting your ring stand out to simply be awesome.
Now you can make your engagement ring look almost nothing like your engagement ring by saturating, sharpening and contrasting the crap out of it so, in no time, it'll look just like a zirconia atop a sausage.
9. Use a filter! Instagram's made it easy for anyone to take a share-worthy photo. Add your ring selfie, apply that perfect Valencia filter and...
I have a sneaking suspicion that whoever wrote this list started to write this tip and just forgot half of it to go make a sandwich.
The list is pretty much dragging its sorry arse now, I mean, tips 8 and 9 feel like they're pretty much the same thing. However if you do run a little Earlybird through your pic you can't upload it with an extra smug #nofilter, so choose wisely.
10. Share! Now's the time to be sentimental, write a saccharine caption about marrying your best friend and use the heart-shaped frame you always wanted to try.
Congratulations. Not just on the pending nuptials, but the fact you made it to the end of this list that contained no less than eight exclamation points.
Or you could just take a selfie of your extended left ring finger in front of the bathroom mirror pulling a classic duckface and be done with it. You don't even have to put on clothes.
But put on clothes.
Pippa blogs at The Wry Bride.
- Daily Life