“Our sense of self is intimately tied to our social media presence.” –Andrew Keen (2006)
Digital Narcissism is an idea that was introduced by Andrew Keen in his book called the Digital Vertigo. He believes that as a result of the digital age and more specifically social network our sense of identity is now defined by what other people think of us.
My idea is is do a photography project based on the idea of digital narcissism and how we have become so immersed in the digital world that we are losing sight of what is going on in the real world. In my project I want to explore the extent to which we have become so addicted that we can’t seem to go for an hour without using digital media. It has gotten so bad that some people have even started using it in times or places which are not always appropriate, for example funerals or hospitals. Social media is one of the platforms that has taken over our lives as it enables for self promotion, which could lead to an obsession as we try to keep up with our virtual lives. In addition to this the rise of the internet celebrity, social network have become a place where its a contest for popularity.
In my photographs I plan to show this obsession with the digital world by taking a series of photographs whereby people are using their digital devices but in the background there will be something serious going. For example a photograph of someone playing on their tablet whilst in the background there is someone getting robbed. This is to show that our media use has become so excessive that sometimes we use it at inappropriate times. The subjects in my photographs are going to be disconnected from the real world. In some of the photographs I want the scenarios to be exaggerated to emphasize the point, but I would also like to create some subtle ones to make it more realistic.
I will come up with several scenarios in various locations to stage in my photographs, and I plan on using different types of digital media for examples. My photographs will be in a documentary style photography and the aim is to make them look as realistic as possible because I believe that they will have greater impact.