The group selfie, or ‘usie’, has become the epitome of cool. These photos capture  fun faces and expressions, and have been made famous by some of the world's most well-known celebrity figures. Their popularity has sky-rocketed - celebrity photo bomb usies continue to surface - and they are showing no signs of slowing down as the hottest new selfie trend. Don't waste time: perfect your group selfie skills and capture memories no matter where you are!

The usie is about relationships, laughter and treasuring memorable moments that will last a lifetime. Here are some expert tips that you can follow to make sure that your usies are superb snapshots.

1. SPEED IS IMPORTANT

You can’t take too long setting up your group selfie, nor can you waffle about the idea too much. Otherwise everyone will lose interest. Unless you were aiming for that frozen grimace look circa the pre-digital era, speed things up!

Carrie Barclay, author of The Selfie Book , says, “If you want to capture a moment in time, au naturel, then speed is key. Grab your besties, tap to focus and go.”

2. CONSIDER THE CONTEXT

If you want a more polished shot for your group selfie, then there are a few things that need to be considered. Ask yourself: Why am I taking the shot? Is it for a leaving do? A birthday? Whatever the occasion, get the celebrant right in the middle of the shot and designate a leader to round up the group. Don't lose the vibe.

“Searching for perfection is a buzz killer too,” says Barclay. “Capture the moment as it happens and just enjoy it. Spending ages organising positions takes the fun out of it. Work as quickly as you can and capture the essence of the photo.  If you’re having a more organised group shot, then have a leader, someone who is in control of the phone and organises the shot. This will keep things short, sweet and organised. Don’t overthink things – it’s only a selfie, after all!”

3. USE THE RIGHT TOOLS

When trying to snap a great shot of the group, it’s a good idea to let those who don’t want to participate walk away.

“Don’t make someone get involved if they don’t want to, a shy or miserable face can ruin the mood,” says Barclay. “Also, if you have a massive group you may need to use a selfie stick otherwise you may have no choice but to take more than one photo. Then you can break people out into separate groups and make a competition of it.”

Barclay recommends that if you are using a selfie stick, you should try and spread people out and encourage them to make a series of expressive faces.

“A mix of smiles, silly faces, hand gestures and positions can really bring a group selfie to life,” she says. “If you’re relying on a handheld selfie, then try standing in a line, with heads popping out either side of the centre. Obviously, go landscape for a wider shot or try your luck at a group panoramic – even when these go very wrong they can be pretty hilarious!”

4.  LAUGHTER IS KEY

The trick to a successful group selfie is context. Don't overthinking the moment. Barclay says, “Remember why you are there! Enjoy your friends and make each other laugh. Real smiles rather than set-up grins make for much better selfies.”

5. BOOM! PHOTOBOMB

Some of the best group selfies have a rogue human in the background, either purposefully or accidentally. They could be making a funny face, leaping into the frame or generally behaving hilariously. This is the art of the photo bomb and it has the potential to really transform a group selfie.

“I love a photo bomb,” says Barclay. “So don’t worry too much if there are folks in the background. Don’t try and squash everyone into a portrait shot. A bluetooth enabled selfie stick is always preferable - waiting for a countdown is clunky, and you all quickly lose momentum. Take advantage of the distance a selfie stick provides. Spread out, and try to get some context, too. Where are you? Why? Find something interesting in the background to give your ‘usie’ some extra pizazz!”

6. THE PERFECT BACKGROUND

Preparing the background of your shot is of some importance. A bad background can really mess up your photo and even make you feel a bit embarrassed.

“Bedroom selfies are a classic time when you forget to check your mess,” says Barclay. “Your glamorous usie before a night out will soon be a laughing stock if there are rogue dirty pants or piles of clothes all over the floor. Nobody wants to see your unmade bed either!”

Instead, choose your background carefully and use it to add context to your shot. It can really transform the group photo into something special.

“If you’re graduating, get the school in the background,” says Barclay. “If you’re on holiday, what about some sun, sea and sand? At a wedding? Sneak the bride and groom having a sly snog into your background – these elements give real life and vitality to your shots.”


This article was commissioned via NewsCred's NewsRoom and written by freelance contributor Tamsin Oxford.