Jul 24, 2023 - Culture

But first, let me take a selfie: Six things to know before visiting Charlotte’s 4,000-square-foot selfie museum

The Picture Project CLT is an interactive selfie museum in east Charlotte where you quite literally do it for the ‘Gram.

The 4,000-square-foot space has over 15 rooms and 30 different photo ops designed to capture your next best Instagram post.

Why it matters: Selfie museums like Picture Project nod to something many of us already love to do — document our lives through our camera roll. But also, it’s summer, and many of us are looking for something to do indoors to beat the heat.

Context: Business partners Sharetha Cooper and Melissa Fuller opened Picture Project opened in December 2021.

  • While it’s primarily a selfie museum, Cooper says it doubles as a private event space and also has a reservable content studio for podcasters.

Details: Picture Project is located at 5648 Independence Blvd. (in Independence Shopping Center).

  • It’s open Wednesday-Friday 11am-2pm and 4-8pm, Saturday 11am-8pm and Sunday noon-6pm.
  • Tickets are $33 for adults, $21 for kids 3-12 and free for kids under three.

My thought bubble: I visited Picture Project with Axios’ Alexis Clinton. Though we’d heard of selfie museums before, it was a new experience for us both. And as creatives who admittedly spend a significant amount of time on Instagram, we were eager to check it out.

Here are six takeaways from our visit.

Give yourself one to two hours to see (and snap) it all.

This isn’t an activity you’ll want to breeze through, nor should you. It took Alexis and I nearly two hours to work our way through, and we didn’t take pictures at every stop.

This could easily be made into a whole day excursion. Because, let’s best honest, you’ll probably be feverishly scrolling through all your shots for a while afterward, so you may as well add post-photoshoot drinks or brunch into the schedule.

Charge your phone ahead of time.

If you’re someone like me who lets their phone hover around 20% on the regular, take my advice and charge up beforehand (or at least bring a mobile charger). Trust me, a couple hours of taking content will put a *major* drain on your phone battery.

There’s no need to plan all your poses.

Unless you already have a few in mind, then go for it. Otherwise, there’s a scannable QR code at every installation that’ll show some ideas for how to pose.

Yes, but: If you want to leave it in all in the hands of a professional, Picture Project also offers professional photography for an additional fee.

Don’t forget to take videos, too.

Yes, it’s a selfie museum, but we also live in the age of TikTok and Reels. There are plenty of video opportunities and interactive aspects if you’d rather create a video montage instead.

Pro tip: If you have an iPhone, set your video to 4K 60fps for the best quality.

It’s worth paying for the wireless photo clicker.

It’s $10 and worth every penny. The wireless clicker connects to your phone’s bluetooth, so you can snap every picture without ever touching your phone. Alexis and I found this to be a game-changer for our duo shots.

Plus, you get to keep it.

Bring a few outfit changes.

Because with so many different installations, you’ll want outfits to match the aesthetic of each (there’s a changing room onsite).

I’d recommend bringing a few different looks: something casual, something dressy and something fun, though there are really no rules here.

Of the hundreds (not an exaggeration) of photos we took, here are a few of our favorites:

Keep up with The Picture Project online or on social media, including Instagram and TikTok. 

Bonus: One current installation is made to look like a full-size Barbie box — so, if you were searching for an excuse to get Barbie-fied, here’s your chance.
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