They’re not going to disappear, the self-shots or selfies. No matter how much photographers may wish it, no matter how silly, outrageous or narcissistic, society, young and old, is fascinated by images of themselves in all situations. Social history, in the form of a self-portrait caught on the spur of the moment, is being re-written by ordinary people.
Photo Source: Ulysess Thirty One – Creative Commons
And, let’s be honest, some of the images we get to see, uploaded to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or wherever, tell a story many of us would love to hear, even if we don’t necessarily wish to experience the moment ourselves.
What was happening in Brixton, London, as this young man captured himself and his surroundings? A peaceful demonstration? Market day in the suburbs?
Photo Source: Dave Bloggs – Creative Commons
Why did this couple decide to take the cheap way out and save on their wedding photographer?
Photo Source: Michele M.F. – Creative Commons
And who is he? Someone on the prowl to take selfies for those without their own cell phone? They used to offer food for the pigeons but, now that feeding has been banned in many cities in Europe, other means of earning a living have to be found. Why not offer yourself as a professional selfie-photographer?
Photo Source: Alan Cleaver – Creative Commons
But for those who criticize this new trend, this stretching and craning and pouting at a small lens held as far away as possible to get just the right shot, a glimpse back to years gone by. Not the first selfie by any means, but a reminder that there is nothing new under the sun, and these could be the grandparents of someone today, standing in their garden, capturing themselves for future generations.
- Viktoria Michaelis.