What Does Your Profile Picture Say?

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Blogosphere is an amazing world, with each blog speaking its own mind, having its own personality. Your profile picture and your profile name is the window for the reader, to your little world. Do you give enough thought before choosing a picture? Do you know it can have tremendous effect on the reader's decision or otherwise to check out your blog or not?

Various people choose many types of pictures - self, other’s, cartoons, animals, things, slogan etc. On the basis of my observations of profile pictures in blogs and social networking sites, I have tried to list a few things about what a particular profile picture signifies about the blogger.

CELEBRITY STUFF: You probably love the celebrity too much (ideally you should find a better way to express it!), but seriously speaking, it shows lack of seriousness towards your blog, and also lack of confidence in your own looks or personality.

LOVE FLORA AND FAUNA: Someone using an animal, bird or flower etc. can mean that the person draws a parallel with the prominent & well-known characteristics of that living being. For example, a lion for being royal and powerful, a penguin for its innocent and sweet looks, a sparrow for its chirpiness or its ability to fly freely and a flower for its beauty.

NATURE AND OBJECTS: Same goes for things of natural beauty, like sky, clouds, river and fire. Here, for example, boundless sky is an expression of one's broad mindset etc. Objects like earthen lamp or light signifies hope in the time of despair or could denote a self-made person.

PICTURES OF SELF/HUMAN FACE: This is one sphere which needs maximum elaboration and it is quite interesting.

  • A passport kind of a picture shows someone very serious, especially serious about one's image and one's blog, and who wants a proper representation of his identity on his blog.

  • A close up of the face of the blogger, with a light, smiling and pleasant expression, shows that the person is social, with straight-forward approach towards the blog, and has nothing to hide about him/herself.

  • A side-cut of a face, musing or thinking, shows that the person either wants to partly hide his identity or wants to highlight the thinking, ponderous side of his personality. If such a display picture is thoughtfully chosen by the blogger, then similar characteristics, of deep observations and thoughts, would be visible in his/her blog too. (This one is my personal favorite!)


  • You don't know me: Hiding the face completely means that the person does not want to reveal her identity at all. But relates to her blog, hence, puts her touch to the picture by darkening it, or avoiding the exposure of face by using pictures of body parts like hands and feet. It also adds an element of mystery and the picture remains very individualistic.

  • The beautiful me: Hiding the face partially and highlighting a beautiful feature of the face, say only the eyes, or the flush of a cheek, or hair, or only the ear with earrings etc. is another interesting thing that I have noticed. It signifies that the person does not want to be recognized or revealed, but wants to draw attention to that feature only, which surely he/she rates as very good.

  • Eyes: This is most commonly seen, one eye in close up. (That always makes me laugh though - it looks like a retina scan to me!) It is weird, and perhaps that is what the blogger wants to show.

NUDITY: Display of obscene gestures, nudity or showing off one's intimate body parts, even partially, is out-and-out an attention seeking behavior, or else it can mean that the person is giving a glimpse into the content of the blog. (I can see the glee in your eyes, you guys!!)

MESSAGE FREAKS: Some people like putting messages/thoughts on things like a T-shirt, and use that as their profile picture. Again shows need for anonymity, at the same time telling the reader their attitude about the specific thing. Moreover, at times it is quite imaginative also.

GIRL IN THE CLOAK: Sometimes, in order to avoid the attention of non-serious male readers/bloggers (who are mouse-clicking happy to see a pretty face!), girls choose profile pictures which are nondescript.

ATTITUDE - HAVE IT FLAUNT IT: Some profile pictures show a certain body language shouting highhandedness, arrogance, superiority or a "couldn't care less" attitude. For example: a picture of the lower limbs of a man, sitting with his feet up on a working table. It is OK if you have attitude, but then that should be the shade of your blog too.

The only point I want to make here is that it is alright to have a profile picture of your choice. After all, you are the best judge, and it is your blog. But having a profile picture (and, for that matter, a profile name too) congruent to your blog -- the flavor and feel of your blog -- is important. After all, it can affect your blog traffic, when the picture is too bland or uninteresting or repulsive.

Lastly, in no way I am saying that I am an expert on this. Everything above is purely my observation and my perception.

Picture Credits: Google Images

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