Getting to know your face can be a little edgy but having control over what the camera sees is nothing but fun! Today you’ll be tapping your inner child and letting her play - Wildly!

What Are Facial Expressions?

So what exactly is a facial expression? When a person experiences an emotion, it can trigger an involuntary reaction, which is expressed by changes in the facial muscles. These slight adjustments in proportion and relative position of the facial features are what make up an expression. The human face can make over 10,000 expressions, which is kind of overwhelming!

Luckily, there are just six fundamental, universal facial expressions. And by universal, I mean that they are recognized even in remote tribes who have never watched the mesmerizing antics of Jim Carrey’s face. 

These six big expressions are happiness, sadness, surprise, fear, anger and disgust. Contempt often gets thrown in the universal category too, but can be difficult for some cultures to distinguish.

What are the Benefits?

I get it, selfie challenges are a bit torturous and make you uncomfortable. What you gain though is far passed the simple confidence of showing up for your photoshoot. We use our expression to share what we are feeling in all facets of life. The real purpose of the process and this course as a whole is to make you fall more in love with yourself and be able to show up whole even when it’s ugly and uncomfortable.

Expression Exercise

Step 1: Grab your camera

Make sure the lighting is even, soft and flattering.  (Now you know how to find this!)

This is all about sourcing emotion, and we want the highest probability that you’ll like the results. This is your chance to really force it.

Do the pouty frown. Do the cheesy smile. Do all the over exaggerated expressions of emotion - get ALL the emotions out! No one is watching, use the full extent of what your face is capable of.

Here are some additional resources to help you prepare a little deeper:

Step 2: Play full out

Ugly is totally permitted here. With enough play, you will find the beauty in the ugliest of corners. Your dark expressions are just beautiful and full of magic as your light side.  Now it's time to see what your face can truly do.

The goal with this exercise is to to take your fake expressions and make them natural. Remember, real emotions are fleeting, so capturing the subtleties in the forced expressions helps lead you to the real ones Laugh at yourself. This shit ain’t easy. The bonus of creating a range of expressions for selfies is once you master what your face can do, you’ll not only have the confidence on camera but it can deeply add to how you communicate in all senses of the word.

You’ll never be able to say that you aren’t photographic again! Practice- It’s worth it!!

Step 3: Shoot ‘til your face hurts

Aim for an average of 4 minutes per expression.  Feel free to break them up. Those muscles get exhausted, and we don't want your face to freeze that way.  (Yeah, my mom always said that too!)

It's practice that creates the magic. Once you’re fully aware of what your face is capable of, you’ll be much better prepared when the camera is pointed at your face. With practice you’ll have full access to your full range of expression - from subtle to poignant. The ability to know exactly what your face is doing gives you massive control and capability to be able to relate how you want to.

How To Play With The five Elements Of Expression

Experiment with the five core emotions first:

  1. joy

  2. fear

  3. sadness

  4. disgust

  5. anger