Tuesday, June 23, 2020
Many people have faced my camera. I don’t feel uncomfortable when I happen to be in front of one. At that point I don’t worry about anything knowing that the problem on how to snap my picture is not mine.
A tradition that I have sort of kept in the last few years is to face a mirror and take my picture on or near my birthday. For me one of the glories of portrait photography is to see the inexorable effect of time on a face, through the years.
But I am certainly a product of the last century and I don’t understand the selfie, or the Me Too movement in relation to that emphasis on “me”.
The words selfish, exhibitionist, narcissist have all been transformed. They are so often used that they have become hollow coins.
But there is a paradox in all this individual selfishness best seen in social media. It is full of ambulance chasers ready to impart their vague connection with someone who died a few minutes before the posting. Individual selfishness has become a collective.
I may love Frank Sinatra’s songs but I don’t understand wishing a dead man or in many cases a long dead relative a happy birthday.
The word visit lost its real humanity when the Vancouver Garbage Disposal Department invited us to visit their website.
Sharing lost its wonder when people share their fave Beatles song from YouTube with no explanation on why it is their favourite. Share, now, means to click and pick up from here and then click and leave there.
In this almost (at last!) time of equality between the multiple sexes available to humanity I don’t understand women (not so much men) putting photographs that are heavily edited for that wonderful defuse glow which will garner:
More beautiful than ever!
And the worse one of them all:
In an age of individuality there seems to be an appalling and collective and banal uniformity.
In photo magazines I see scads of nature photographs and landscapes of mountains reflected perfectly on serene lakes. I see sunsets to the point that I long for Vancouver’s rainy season.
Then there are those thousands of closeups of flowers shot in full sun that make me wish the cat pictures to come back in full force again.
I am aware that I am ranting but I know that few will get past my “pic”. I feel relieved about that and more than ever I agree and sympathize with my former friend Abraham Rogatnick who a year before he died he told me, “ I am no longer for this world and I am glad of it.”
Originally published at http://blog.alexwaterhousehayward.com.