How to Look Cool in a Photo

1981-04 Justin (4) Elsie Basement Great Grandpa Chair
Me (4) April 1981

This is all wrong. I’m looking away from the camera, I have no idea what I’m doing with my hands, and I don’t know what I’m doing with my mouth, but I don’t think we can count that as a smile. The brick wall in Uncle Mark and Aunt Elsie’s basement is a nice touch, but when is the last time someone looked cool in a rocking chair? Okay, let’s see if someone else in the family can show us how to look cool in a photo.

1981-04 Howard (23)
Dad (23) April 1981

My dad is doing a better job here than I did. He’s smiling and he’s looking into the camera. However, he doesn’t know what to do with his hands—now I know where I get it from. We also have the issue of 1970s era brown and orange dominating the color palate. I bet I know who can show us how to look cool in a photo.

1981-07 Steve (15)
Uncle Steve (15) July 1981

Now, this is what I’m talking about. Uncle Steve has it down. He’s smiling, but just enough to let you know he’s too cool for a full grin. He’s looking confidently into the camera and he knows exactly what to do with his hands, notice he even slightly crossed his legs. He’s also wearing the forever in style jeans with a white tank-top. He’s even leaning on an organ. Maybe he knows how to play it, maybe he doesn’t, but couldn’t you see him leaning on an organ on the back of an album cover? Also, the paint by numbers Jesus on black velvet (painted by my mom when she was 17) just takes this whole thing to the next level of cool. This, my friends, is how you look cool in a photo.

Now that you know how to look cool in a photo, give it some practice, then, pay it forward. Soon, we’ll all be looking cool in photos, and we have Uncle Steve to thank for it.

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