Archive for October, 2011

The fine line between sad and pathetic…

So before I talk more about photography and blogging in general there is something I need to get off my chest… I have been considering writing a blog post about this for a long time but in the freight of sounding typical it has taken me some time to figure out an approach… Not sure I actually have one… This thought has been roaming around for a while, fed by different similar ones… For starters I came across this blog called “Le Mec Qui” (the guy who…) a blog about all theese different types of guys, and girls, that we all know so well. For every blog post I read on this blog I felt inspired to write one on my own only I didn’t know if it would be too taggy or if people would just write me off as being irationally angry. I can securely enough confirm that I am neither, (maybe half crazy, but that is another thing) the thing that captured me however was how these blogposts always seemed to fit the exact picture. Then what happened was that my brother was quite sad and started watching Sex & The City religiously, every time I then self-pityied myself he said just watch Sex & The City… I have obviously watched this show over and over and over, but it never seems to get old. Then I started Clay Shirky’s book Cognitive Surplus and he confirmed my fear of how when we feel alone we watch tv-series to feel better. The acteurs become our friends and instead of being out between real people, the tv-shows becomes our life-saviour (well maybe not quite but still..). Now I have restarted Sex & The City, sadly, and sadly it does feel incredibly good. Also and moreso because they always pinpoint every stereotype. Now this show started out in the 90’s so things have happened since. Particurlarly in the relationships between boys and girls it seems as though things have just become even more hardcore than they were. A lot of things on that show are things we recognize, but some do seem to have changed. The whole part about everyone getting the one they love in the end is of course just TV, if they all ended up as single girls their viewer rate would probably drop massively. But what about that whole dating thing… When was the last time anyone boys or girls heard this phrase “so can I see you again??” or “thank you for a lovely dinner, we should really do that again some time”… First of all the dinner part never happens, it is usually a beer in some bar, hopefully if you choose the bar at least it’s a nice place. Then the phrase that’ll get closest to the ones I just mentioned are either “let me get this round” or the next day when one of you says “well I’ll text you” as a good bye. To avoid the urge to actually call back I usually give them my number… Basic tactic… So the romantic dinner has been replaced with cheap beer (that you usually end up paying for yourself) and the let’s see each other again becomes a promised text after the usual one night stand… A text that usually never get’s sent. I know I am being cynical, this is obviously all put out on a stick so if you are in a very romantic dating phase… Maybe don’t read on…

Then there are all the stereotypes which pretty much are same old same old. There is the guy you’ve given your number (and not slept with yet) who seems extremely keen to meet up. You then do, maybe a couple of times and he will spend the evening chatting you up (buttering you up is probably a more appropriate word) and then when he doesn’t call you back after the one night stand (you already knew you were gonna have) you wonder why he went through all the trouble and buttering and buttering when you would probably have slept with him anyway… As if he didn’t know you were the one deciding what was gonna happen and he probably still thinks talking women up, filling their ears with sweetness, is his magic weapon… Then there is the emotional unavailable guy… This guy is usually someone you end up actually liking, you’ll spend some great moments and you’ll think you have it and then out of the blue, nothing. Back in the days when Sarah Jessica Parker ran around New York in her Louboton’s telling the truth to every freakin’ guy she was with, this basic thing ‘telling the truth’ did seem as such a simple thing. A given, a completely rational solution. Now however when calls have turned into texts or Facebook chatting, just plainly saying what you feel seems completely out of the picture. Where did the honesty go I sometimes wonder… It makes me a little sad! This last case is obviously the most dangerous one because you let yourself go when you know you should have stopped a million years ago. Not always so easy when men become drugs. Sometimes even with the one night stand you do slip and this is where women turn into (apologizing for my French) crazy bitches… They become the definition of a stalker! Now I really hope I am not the only one who has been there. The guy you don’t really care about, but somehow you end up double-texting (the verb of the 21st century) and the minute you double text the first time you know all is lost. Luckily this usually makes you feel so stupid that you stop. Or in a less desirable situation two weeks of spamming goes by and then you wake up and realize what you have become (that you’ve turned into Godzilla) and then hopefully you stop. The crazy thing with the spamming is that usually when you look back you don’t even remember what was so great about that guy, it’s just that the spamming has a life of it’s own. This would never happen with the guy you really like because you will prefer doubting to actually knowing the truth. So you keep quiet, you don’t do anything and you obsess with the why and why and why for days and days and… Well you get the picture. So where does this all take us… Let’s do the Carrie Bradshaw thing… “I couldn’t help but wonder” Have we all become so emotionally stunned that the easiest thing is just to use sex as candy, eating it when we want it without getting addicted? Or do we play along and hope to get out in time? And last but not least, is honesty now completely off the table? I know the few times I was honest, stalker or not, it didn’t work. So I don’t have an answer to that question… Rationally honesty does seem to be the best answer but when you’re afraid you might get your fingers burned then suddenly it is not that simple.

Now before y’all write me off as being the most cynical Godzilla on the planet I must admit I do have a friend who actually does date, and who has a million rules about not calling(texting) back too soon, about no double texting (cause obviously he’s not stupid) and about no sex before date number very late. Did I mention this is a boy… So they do exist but I am afraid it is an endangered species on the edge of extinction. Also I’m not even sure if someone pulled a proper date on me that I would  actually enjoy it, it would probably feel like being Anna Karenina or Scarlett O’Hara and I actually happen to like cheap beer! I think the reason for not wanting to write this post in the beginning was that it is just so simple and basic and I’m not sure I am willing to accept the fact that this has nothing to do with the questions about reality in photography or the question of the being of being in being (darsein lol) this is just same old same old. Maybe we should just stop obsessing and eat some candy, hell that’s why it’s there…


Is the glass half full or half empty…?

Right so I’m now half through this master I’m doing or more likely almost finished and yet soooo far from the final result. I still need to do this thesis. Now this may sound fairly straight forward and one would very much think that is the case, only I cannot help feeling a little like Sisyphus must have felt pushing that stone up the hill. The bloody thing keeps rolling down over and over and it seems as if I am getting nowhere at all (wallowing in self pity is probably not the answer to this at all it’s just so easy). This “getting nowhere” may be due to way too much ‘Friends watching’ and waaay too little reading and I’m therefore attempting to turn this around. Sometimes you just have to reach rock-bottom before you can push the stone back up the hill (or whatever it was them Greek dudes said).

I’m thinking now that maybe I should have chosen something about branding or cultural marketing or something with cultural economics… Something where there would be a lot of reading and figures and statistics and straight forward answers. Maybe there never is a straight forward answer and maybe I should just get over myself and get on with it. See I have chosen to do my thesis on photography and social networking, more specifically on iPhone App’s such as Instagram or Hipstamatic that are themselves photographic social networking. As most ideas before they become something else, before they transform into something one can actually grasp, it is a good idea…  But it is still only that. Now the outcome obviously depends on what I do with it. To elaborate, what I was thinking was throughout October and November to get in there and do a lot of Instagramming’, do different themes of pictures every week and in that way try to get to know this social network better, try to understand which pictures people like and enjoy the most and why.

To throw some theory in there with the pictures I have until now been looking (not enough) at Liz Well’s Understanding Photography and so far I gather (maybe this is obvious too) that depending on the theorist the ways in which they look at photographs are very different. I could probably do this thesis with focus on just one thinker say Susan Sontag for example, but I’m feeling that the whole discussion would then just be limited to her ideas. For this to be interesting, I’m thinking there should be a discussion about the different ways we use photographs and why. Especially in these new photographic social networks. It may not be groundbreaking news and breathtaking new ideas but hopefully it will incite discussions, conversations and maybe, hopefully, give a better understanding of these networks and why they are not a complete waste of time… Maybe it will turn out that they are, but then hopefully there will still be an explanation to why.

Now because this project is about social networking I feel it would be stupid not to blog along about it in the same time. I will therefore try to post regular blogs about the advancement of the project. The pictures will be here on the blog, on a specially created Tumblr, on Instagram and hey let’s throw in Facebook and Twitter as we go along. I’ll probably try to alternate though, let’s not be too crazy and spammy’. Any comments, thoughts, critiques or useful links are more than welcome. On Instagram I am ‘myellafyrstenberg’ and I’ll post the Tumblr link shortly.

Because it is such a nice and sunny day I think the first theme should be lights…

Stay tuned for more and thanks’ for stopping by!