If you're anything like me, you usually think of your pics in terms of content: Here's me smiling. As always, our data comes from dating site Ok Cupid, one of the largest, and most interesting, datasets on the web. We feel like people don't really think about these things when they choose a profile photo, and yet, as we shall see, their misuse can seriously mess you up. Today, however, we'll analyze photography from a numerical angle—we'll discuss flash, focus, and aperture instead.
Here are our findings: The type and brand of camera you use has a huge effect on how good you look in your pictures.This is a plot of the most popular makes: As you can see, the general pattern is that more complex cameras take better pictures.Interchangable lens cameras (like digital SLRs) make you look more attractive than your basic point and shoot cameras, and those in turn make you look better than your camera phone.I'm not sure what's going on with Kodak all the way to the right there.They might want to consider making sharing more difficult.
Beyond the advantages or shortcomings of any specific brand, the more-complex-is-better trend bears out at all ages: And we also found similar numbers looking only at people who uploaded File this under "icebreakers, Mac World '11".Finally, statistical proof that i Phone users aren't just getting fucked by Apple: The chart pretty much speaks for itself; I'll just say that the numbers for all three brands are for 30 year-olds, so it's not a matter of older, more experienced people preferring one phone to another.We found this data as part of our general camera-efficacy analysis: we crossed all kinds of user behaviors with the camera models and found we had data on the number of sexual partners for 9,785 people with smart phones. Here's the plot by age: Just so you know, the names and the actual photos are removed when we do this kind of research; we just see the stats in aggregate. Now let's leave brands and gadgets aside and look at how purely photographic phenomena can affect your precious face.This is another simple finding that needs little explanation.Soft light can hide wrinkles, blemishes, devil eyes. As I illustrate with the dotted lines below, you can calculate the equivalent "aging" effects of a flash by counting years horizontally between the 'flash' and 'no flash' lines.For example, a 28 year-old who used a flash is as attractive as a 35 year-old who didn't.