1. ONE PERSON’S TRASH IS ANOTHER’S TURN-ON.
Some welcome them with open hearts and open orifices. Some “just don’t get them.” Others will maintain that they’re offensive, repulsive, even a deal-breaker. Have a good think about your prospective dick-pic recipient before you proceed to step 2.
2. THEY’RE SUBJECTIVE.
They have a poor reputation due to lack of consent. Only send one if you received a text that says, “Send me a picture of your dick” or you’ve been boning for a while and have a sext-heavy rapport or you have for asked and received the enthusiastic go-ahead.
3. KNOW YOUR SUBJECT.
What are its strengths? Weaknesses? If you’re unsure, there’s always the Tumblr page Critique My Dick. (Oh, and don’t be lazy—take your pants off.)
4. YOU’RE YOUR OWN FLUFFER.
Get hard and don’t let it go limp, not even close. I’ve known guys to send pictures of themselves standing naked in front of a mirror with a blank expression and a mostly flaccid member. Those pictures are not hot. They’re sad and creepy.
5. GIVE YOURSELF A HAND.
Since you are taking the photo, or at least that’s the assumption, you only have one free hand at your disposal. Use it to gently grasp the base. Many girls find it to be more sensual, and girls love sensual shit.
6. ACT LIKE AN ART DIRECTOR.
Lighting! Cinematography! Snapchat filters! Now is the time to channel your inner artiste. Keep it simple. Steer clear of fluorescent bulbs or using a flash. Natural or warm, yellowy light is best for self-portraits of any kind, especially penis portraits. Also, remove any clutter from the background; it’s a mood-ruiner.
7. ANGLE IS EVERYTHING.
The old point-of-view shot is the standard, and there’s value in tradition. But it’s often more flattering to take a photo from the front, not above, so utilize the self-timer. Include just a little bit of man bod. If you take a shot of your dick peeking out from a pair of sweaty gym shorts, it will probably look like a turtle recoiling into its shell.
8. MIND YOUR PUBES.
Pubes are a matter of personal preference. You don’t want your pubic hair stealing the spotlight. If anything, it should enhance, not detract. If it makes your phallus look smaller than it actually is, trim it down.
9. BALLS ARE EVEN MORE DELICATE.
Much like the tenderness they possess, photographing the family jewels is a fragile endeavor. We know they’re there, but they don’t need to be seen. They just don’t photograph well. If your balls steal the spotlight, that’s an issue.
10. NO BABIES. EVER.
Thanks to Anthony Weiner, this is where we are. If we’ve learned anything from the disgraced politician, it’s to use discretion. Sleeping toddlers should never, ever be involved in your dick pic.
11. OR INANIMATE OBJECTS.
The concept of holding a ruler, soda can, remote control or tube of cherry Chapstick (yes, seriously) alongside your dick to show scale is lame. It almost guarantees a photo that won’t turn anyone on.
12. THINK WITH YOUR BRAIN, NOT WITH YOUR DICK.
Ask yourself, “What’s the goal here?” Are you trying to inspire an instantaneous orgasm? Gain a fuckbuddy? Get a photo in return? Just showing off? Compensating for mediocre social skills? For example, some guy named Ryan told The Cut: “When all the hints of my desperation have been sent verbally or in text, the logical next move is the dick pic.” No!
13. BE PREPARED FOR IT TO BE SHARED AND LAUGHED AT.
This is a valid possibility. There’s also the chance the recipient will put it in an art show. Be 100 percent pleased with what you’re sending out. Even Snapchat isn’t safe; everyone knows you can take a screenshot of anything. Recently, Ginuwine direct-messaged some girl on Instagram and then his “peen took over the Internet.”
14. SEND ONLY THE BEST.
You think your first dick pic will be your last? Real photographers take hundreds of shots to get the winner, and you would be wise to do the same. Delete the rejects. Why would you want unflattering shots of your precious genitalia floating around the cloud? Put a little effort into it. If all else fails, you can just hire a professional.