By Nina Peñalosa-Carpio

Don’t lie and say that you are beyond one. Come on, now. We are all guilty of the occasional shameless selfie, or OOTD, or the “kunwari candid” blogger shots. We all have our “Instagram friends” – those poor, overworked souls who ask for nothing in return as they take photos of us pretend-walking nonchalantly down the street, or contorting our bodies into weird shapes as we try to find the perfect angle. Lahatnamantayoluma-lifestyle. #Ayslangyan! But naturally, some do it better than others. If you really must profess of your beautiful lifestyle, let it be in a manner that puts your aesthetic sensibilities in a good light. In short, gagawinmonalang din, gandahanmona! Blogger and style savant Nina Peñalosa-Carpio tells us how.

The perfect lifestyle photo can be the ultimate storyteller. It can tell the story of your life,who you are, your character, your favorite activities, and your feelings at a given moment. I always get inspired when I see pictures of people traveling the world, pictures of people’s fitness journey and pictures of people basically just doing the things they love. It makes me want to get up and do something myself! Yes, a simple picture can be that compelling. It has the power to inspire and encourage.

Here are some practical tips on how to nail the “perfect” lifestyle shot:


1. The Equipment:

• Camera – I have two cameras that I use.
o A digital camera (Canon G7X)
o A DSLR (Canon 7D)

• Tripod – I have my gorilla pod which I also use when I’m vlogging. And most of the time I just make use of what is immediately available in my surroundings. I sometimes put my camera on a bench or even on top of a flowerpot.

2. The Light
Natural light is your best friend. It’s my favorite source of lighting as it can make anybody look good and, well, natural! When you’re shooting outdoors try to always shoot in a shaded area. Make sure the light is always facing you and voila! Instant Photoshop! But keep in mind that natural light can change depending on what time it is of the day, weather etc. so make sure to plan ahead.


3. Moving Pose
Try to act as normal as possible. Lifestyle photography is all about capturing reality. So if you have your own photographer (a friend, sister or husband) ask them to take pictures of you candidly. But if you’re on your own with a tripod choose poses that show movement because it looks more natural. I like poses where I’m doing something because it gives the picture some motion. For example, in my OOTD shots, shots I usually pose with one leg slightly in front of the other like I’m walking. And if I’m working out, I time it perfectly so that my jump or my lifting is captured.


4. Look Tall and Slim
If you want to look taller, make sure that the person taking your picture shoots from a low angle. Also, another trick is you can pop up 1-2 inches on your toes when you’re wearing flats. It gives you an elongated look and a better posture. And if you want to look slimmer, shoot at a higher angle.


5. Angle your body
Facing the camera straight on is not flattering. Create angles with your body and don’t just stand with your arms hanging loosely at your sides. Stand at a 75degree angle, point your toe towards the camera and place your weight on your back leg.


6. Be confident and smile!
When you feel better about yourself, the better you’ll look.

These practical tips should actually just be secondary when taking lifestyle photos.

Getting the perfect shot is not all about how good your equipment is, or whether you put your weight in front of the other, it’s about enjoying what you’re doing, getting motivated and hope to inspire others. If you love what you do and do what you love, trust me it will translate in the picture and eventually your audience will enjoy it with you.

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