In the age of New Media a self-portrait is probably considered a very common theme to photograph. The majority of people using the internet have probably engaged with some kind of digital representation of their selves. A representation that is a creation of our imagination and the same time real.
The web is cluttering with profile pictures that look similar as if they adhere to certain rules. Angle, lighting, composition and most distinct; resolution. The amount of pixels is relatively low, as many used their mobile phone’s camera, that gives a noisy and under-saturated look. On top of that, every platform resizes and re-encodes the files uploaded and places them in equally shaped boxes, on the exact same location.
It seems that our digital representation lacks of creative freedom, full of constraints, thus making us look the same.
The questions I asked are, how can I represent myself and how can I do it differently.
The following is the first task of the online photography class #picbod along with my response. You can find more information about the class or get involved at picbod.org and in the Google+ community where it currently leaves.
Pre-visualize and produce a self portrait [using only available light*] unrestricted in theme and technique yet still supplying a message to the viewer. You should spend time first understanding what it is you wish to convey before then looking at the composition and mechanics of the image and finally production.
* While you are required to use only available light you can still shape and adjust this light as you see fit. Street lights, laptops, computers and televisions can all be employed.
This is me in front of my two computers, situated in the room I live in, where 95% of the time I spend looks like this. Since I came to England I evolved this awkward relation with the computer. In the beginning I was spending more time as I new less people than today.
After the first year I was having thoughts whether this was normal and if other people are like this. I realized that the source was not the machine but the network, plainly the World Wide Web.
After thinking on a personal level I elevated my thoughts in a global scale and since then it’s a great concern of mine. What is changing? How? Is it right or wrong? What are the disadvantages? We tend to see the advantages in new technologies and fail to see if everyone is keeping up.
Though, one thing I have answered is that we are going through a great change in terms of how people think and act; the human evolution. What affirms my answer is that every person born from now on will grow hooked up on the network, a way of living, distant to the psychical interaction we were once used to.