There are so many photographs of us; too many photographs of us. Out there. Existing. Best not to think about it too much. Actually, let’s…
This is the thinnest picture ever taken of you. But you can’t find it. Annabel knows that hers was taken in June 2012 at 6am in Venice as the sun came up over the Grand Canal. Can she find it? What do you think?
The Cut Out
Without a doubt the best photo ever taken of you. You look… exactly as you think you look when you think of yourself looking like the real you. Better, actually. Trouble is you are wound around someone you now loathe. Probably an ex. And without psychotically scissoring/scalpelling/Stanley-knifing their face out of the picture you CANNOT extricate yourself in a way that makes it possible to frame or even post the picture. This makes you hate them even more. The lost years, the cheating, the boredom, the bad sex, and now they’ve even taken this away from you.
The Before Photo
There will be one. Could be from the dentist/plastic surgeon/personal trainer but there will be a terrible ‘before’ shot that you were in no way, physically or emotionally, prepared for but were too disempowered to say no to. And it’s on file. And files are leaked. All the time.
The Shame About The Others…
You look great in this group shot. Radiant. Happy. Nice dress, by the way. But, by displaying this you are throwing everyone else under the bus. You look like you’re a lone human standing in the middle of the Star Wars Canteen. So now it’s ‘that woman is reasonably attractive but there must be something very wrong with her because look at all her grotesque friends’. Best put it away.
The Freaky One
Something went wonky. Why have you got three legs? Or a strange little baby hand? Why does your head appear to be growing out of that man’s neck? You can never un-see this.
The Wedding Picture
It wasn’t your wedding. You were recovering from a catastrophic heartbreak. In every single picture you look like your smile muscles have been cut, you are wrung out like a wraith. You can feel the papery rustle of your dried-out soul when you look at this picture. The artsy wedding photographer was weirdly obsessed with you, so there you are haunting every shot like a Miss Havisham in Karen Millen.
It’s your LinkedIn profile pic, your “going back to your old school to talk about your career “ pic. It is at the top of the CV you are constantly updating. It is the one you send out when anyone ANYONE wants a professional pic of you. It was taken 150 years ago. It will have to last until you die.