Filtered Selfies

I’ve been thinking about selfies recently – or rather – filtered selfies. Take the photo accompanying this post for example. Taken at just the right angle, with just the right amount of ambient light, with a ridiculously good phone camera, and then filtered to death via a mobile app that makes a mundane shot suddenly look dramatic, moody, reflective, and all those other words.

I know some people despise filters, and some people despise selfies. I don’t really mind either. I’ve always thought people were by far the most interesting thing to draw pictures of, or take photographs of. It’s probably worth noting that I spent two years drawing and painting bad pictures of people before ditching it all for a life spent headbutting desks, and sitting in conference rooms.

I also did photography at college, and not only learned about apertures, and f-stops, exposure times, and lighting, but also about the magic of developing film, and post processing images by hand to lighten, darken, soften, sharpen, and so on.

I see no problem with photo manipulation at all. Sure, the photo above isn’t what I typically look like, but then would you really be interested in seeing the neanderthal that scrapes himself out of bed most mornings? Do you really think Garbo looked anything like the wonderful photos taken by Clarence Sinclair Bull? Or that Marilyn looked anything like the photos Eve Arnold took? Of course they didn’t.

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