Advanced Studio Practice 2A – Self Portrait planning + research


Following on from the lecture i must create a snap shot of myself using one prop which expresses my identity to use for a profile picture. This snap shot will explore my identity, how i see myself an how i want others to see me.

In order to create one snap shot to explore myself i must use a prop that explores myself in multiple ways. Therefore i must dig into my identity and make a list of things/ways that express who i am

My ideas;

Halloween + Scorpio
Birthday + star sign
Birthday explores my identity as I share it with my twin

— Associate Halloween with dressing up – scary/ dead — masks/ face dressed up
Scorpio traits- passionate/loyal/obsessive/jealousy
Colours express these traits – red/blue/dark green
– mask (Halloween) with make-up of colours representing my traits
– half and half face – half skeleton representing dead (Halloween) half colour representing a trait

— Cover myself in colour that represent my traits and add a prop of jewellery  – necklaces are usually a key part of my outfit – showing my outfit through my traits and adding my everyday accessory
Scorpio due to birthday
Interested in fashion – statement necklaces
Portrait photography – beauty shots
– face paint – eye shadow
Draw on chest upwards/ mix colours/ everyday make-up/ statement necklace/ beauty shot lighting

I am a Scorpio, born 31/10/93, a twin. My birthday is important to me. My star sign traits represent my personality; i am passionate, loyal, jealous and obsessive. These traits are a big part of who i am. I also love colour and fashion. I like bright colourful things, they draw in my attention. Fashion is a key point of my lifestyle. I have worked in the retail industry for 4 years. I’m currently obsessed with the statement necklace, a necklace has become a key point to my outfits. I am also extremely passionate about photography, mainly portraiture.

Looking in to these ideas more closely. Colours can be portrayed to represent emotions; personality traits such as passion,loyalty, jealousy and obsessive behavior. The colours the represent these traits are red,green and blue; RGB. RGB is also a huge part of photography. a colour mode within photography – Photoshop. As a studying photographer i am currently looking in to beauty portraiture; how to light the subject. Beauty photography including make-up/hair.

Taking all these factors in to consideration i am going to create a self portrait by using colours. Face paint in the colours of RGB (red/green/blue) will be spread across my body from my chest up to my forehead. My hair will be scraped back off of my face and i will have my going out make-up on. I will light the shot as if i was about to take a beauty portrait. The image will be sharp and focused.
i am still unsure whether the face paint represents my prop or whether i can add a statement necklace to add deeper depth to my expression.

This will be a successful self portrait as the colours used within my portrait will express my identity.
my personality traits
my interest in colours
my passion of photography
develop my weakness of learning new skills – lighting beauty shots
my obsession with statement necklaces


As a portrait photographer i need a vast knowledge of lighting set ups. I want to become more confident with beauty shots as i am looking into commercial portraiture.

Therefore i am going to use a beauty photography lighting set up in order to portray all my interests within my self-portrait. I will be using a beauty dish as my main light source as I am going to be taking a close up portrait. I will situate the beauty dish directly in front of me. It will cast a harsh lighting tone and add dark/hard shadows upon my face. I will use a silver reflector, to fill in the shadows. I will be using a silver reflector instead of gold as gold adds a colour cast to the reflected light. I want the background behind me to be dark. I will be using a flag to stop the light bouncing behind me so the model is more focused and the background been darker adds depth.

I will these using these lighting techniques as I want to create a flawless, sharp, focused beauty shot just like the one above so that the image is strong and represents my interests as a portrait photographer.

As a portrait photographer I am comfortable behind the camera, however I do lack confidence in being in front of the camera and expressing my concept precisely as sometimes people to not see your ideas as you do yourself. Therefore I believe creating one snap shot relating the a self-concept is a great place to start.

Lidia Vives work and words have inspired me towards my final idea for my self-portrait. She is confident within expressing herself using herself and not other people. This is a weakness I need to work and improve upon. I shy away from being behind the camera however now working on creating a concept and expressing my idea I know that I need to put myself in the models shoes so that I can relate to her point and view and help her explore my idea and what I want to create.

Lidia’s images have helped me decide to explore the usage of colour within my self-portrait in order to represent my traits. I am a shy person when it comes to strangers and then knowing me like an open book. Therefore I have decided that my snap shot will capture some of my main personality traits through colour and body paint. I will use a beauty lighting set up which will put me highly under the spot light and use harder lighting (beauty dish) to expose myself.

My work will differ from Lidias, I will be using 3 colours (red,blue,green) which represent the traits I have from being a Scorpio (passion,loyalty, jealousy and obsessive). These colours also represent my love for photography as they are a key colour mode within digital photography. The colours also represent my love for colour and fashion therefore I will be adding a statement necklace as my prop. This is an important prop as it is something I wear most days, it makes up my outfit. I will also be covering only half of my face as the colours only represent some of my traits. Finally I will be using a beauty dish with harsh lighting and a silver reflector to finish off the shot.

(research sources found in outcome 3 of research folder)


Published by

Olivia Bates

My aim is to delve in to the alliance between fashion and people so I can explore the link between the subjects in order to communicate my image I have the ability to approach any difficult situation and solve any problems to find resolutions in order to work efficiently. I can manage situations, communicate honestly and have a trustworthy manner as I am expressive and take no nonsense which allows me to get the job done. Please contact me at; and visit my website;

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