Now that working remotely and virtual meetings are part of our new normal during the coronavirus lockdown, we’re all thinking about how to look good on webcam. Below I’ll share some top tips for looking better on a webcam – from how to light your face to where to position yourself in relation to the camera.
Pimp up your camera setup
When it comes to the quality of your digital image it’s all about your camera! The built-in camera on your laptop is normally your go to as it’s most convenient but the quality can be pretty poor. Using a simple app, like EpocCam, and an iPhone tripod you can actually use your mobile phone as an HD webcam. This will give you a much better image with minimal effort and all for less than £10. For an even better picture, you can use a HD webcam, or if you’re going for maximum impact, you can repurpose a mirrorless or DSLR camera.
- Sony 5100 16-50mm Interchangeable Lens Camera with 3-Inch Flip Up LCD
Ensure you’re well lit
No matter how good quality your camera is, you’ll always want to find the most flattering light. If possible, your light source should be in front of, or just off to the side of you. Lighting yourself from behind will look like you’re in an episode of Crime Watch and lighting from the top and bottom can cause some pretty undesirable results. Don’t forget, your laptop screen is also a source of light, so keep that in mind when setting up your front-facing lighting so you don’t overexpose yourself.
- Neewer Ring Light for a constant front-facing light source
Setup your space
No matter whether you are working from a home office or the corner of a bedroom, what surrounds you on screen is now your digital “stage.” Think about how you can use this space to express yourself or showcase your brand or business. But don’t go too crazy you want people to focus on what you are saying and not be distracted by what’s behind you. If you’ve got an important call it’s always worth taking a few minutes to remove the mess, check your camera position and fix your lighting!
Think about the position of your webcam
Before you start the webcam video, think about how to position yourself in relation to the camera. You’ll want to shoot slightly down at your face, so grab some books or a box and raise your device. The big secret when it comes to framing yourself, is to imagine a noughts and crosses grid laid over the top of your screen. Center yourself, then pop your eyes along the top third line of the grid. And don’t forget, don’t sit too close. Device cameras are wide-angled and exaggerate features if you’re too close (no one want’s a massive nose or chin!)
Look good if you want to look good
Once you start the webcam video, assume everyone is looking at you. Look straight into the camera lens as if it’s the eyes of the person you’re chatting to. And don’t be afraid to dress up a bit. I love the saying ‘business on the top, party on the bottom!’ If you can remember how to put makeup on, start with your best lippy then sit up straight and smile.
Now that you’ve got my professional top tips, here is a quick summary of actionable tricks to look good on webcam!
10 tips to look good on webcam
- Look good if you want to look good. Dress in solid colours, sit up straight, do your makeup, shave and SMILE!
- Use nice lighting. A simple desk lamp pointed right over the lens of your device works well.
- Never backlight or light from underneath. Don’t sit with a window behind you.
- Get rid of the light you don’t need. Keep the room lit but kill light that interferes with the light on your face.
- Always shoot slightly down at your face. Use a box or books to raise your device.
- Position your eyes along the top third. Pointing the lens at your hairline is perfect.
- Angle the device so you are in the center of the frame. The light, camera and you are all centered.
- Don’t sit too close. Device cameras are wide-angled and exaggerate features if you’re too close.
- Be mindful of what’s behind you in the shot. Hide the mess and remove distractions.
- Look at the lens to maintain eye contact with the other person. Your eye-line is the lens of your device.
If you’d like the full list of all my recommended products in this article, check out my Amazon list.
Looking to update your office wall with a family photo? I can design your collection based upon your style and décor and match to any frames or artwork that you currently have. All you need to do is send a photo and one measurement in the room, and I can create a design for you. Pop over to my frame store now to see if anything takes your fancy or drop me a message.