New Years photoshoot

behind the scenes of a DIY New Years photoshoot | Amanda Zampelli

I thought I’d share a behind the scenes look at my New Years photo that I’ve been posting everywhere lately. I know whenever I come across someone’s fun self-portrait or photoshoot project, the social media buff in me goes into ‘detective’ mode and tries to analyze how it was created, a possibly strategize how I could recreate something similar to it myself.

Firstly, I knew New Years was coming up, and knew I wanted a photo for it, so I planned ahead. I actually took this photo on Christmas Day, before heading out to my family’s traditional Christmas brunch. I was already ‘hair done, make-up did’ for actually going out, and that’s usually the only time a GLAM shot of myself will actually happen. The point being: when you’re going to be glammed up for an actual occasion, plan to host a mini photoshoot for yourself before heading out to the event.

As far as my outfit goes…that sequins top is actually a dress that I bought years ago, never wore because it’s too short and skanky, and still has the tag on. I’d never wear it out at this point, unless I get it altered, but it upped the glam game of the photo for sure! I slid a black tutu that’s too big for me (I need to learn how to shop apparently) over it, and ended up holding it or posing in a way where it wouldn’t fall down.  Wear things to suit the feel of the photo, then hang it back up and put your cozy clothes back on.

Second thing to note: it doesn’t take a HUGE, EXPENSIVE set-up to take an impactful photo. Below is my setup, and although I’m looking to improve it eventually, I’m in no rush and this gets the job done. The silver string curtain was purchased on amazon months ago – for Valentine’s Day 2016, actually – and reused for this shoot. It hangs down, with extra, from my 8-foot ceiling, and I adhere it to my wall with clear packing tape. Also, set up near a large window in your home because bright, natural light is always the way to go.

behind the scenes of a DIY New Years photoshoot | Amanda Zampelli

Above you can see the stool I used to hang up the curtain, and my tripod setup. It’s rigged with masking tape, and weighed down with a bean bag meant to be heated up and placed over your eyes for relaxation. Yeah…we are super high end over here!

behind the scenes of a DIY New Years photoshoot | Amanda Zampelli

Another note – that I think we all know, but for some reason often forget – is that: it took about 30-40 photos to get the one that was good enough to go with. Take a large amount of photos, lovies. If you’re not too critical – there’s bound to be a few that make the cut.

I took some BAD ones, and I love when people see the chosen one out of the neglected 50 and go, “you’re so gorgeous!” Haa haa! Thank you, I’ll take the compliment, but if they saw some of the others, they’d be more like, “John, your girlfriend! WOOF!” …and that’s okay because I got one I can use, and I plan to play it out ’til I can’t stand the sight of it anymore, and social media is weird and let’s just roll with it!

My final note is to use a good self-timer app – a good self-timer app is everything. THIS is the one I use, and you can adjust the amount of seconds you have before it starts photographing, and the amount of photos you want it to take at a time. This helps take your photos for the ‘shoot’ in bulk. I usually set the app to take 10 photos at a time, and therefore only 4 or 5 rounds with the self-timer app will get me a couple of photos I like enough to use.

These quickie, self-hosted low budget photoshoots create great content for memory keeping, FYI. Documenting my one little word® for 2017 with it not only creates more interest around what I have to say about it, but provides a time stamp of who I am & how I feel at the start of it.

See a past self-hosted photoshoot for my cousin’s 16th birthday HERE, and behind the scenes of it HERE.
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I also photographed a beach photoshoot baby announcement back in 2014 HERE.