Digital Mask

This work is a composite made using a ten year old self portrait. It is radically different from ‘The Kiss’ published a few days ago which uses the same base image. Both fit well with my ideas for the original photograph, which was about exploring differences between public persona and private self. We all present a public face which may be very different from how they see ourselves when outside of public view. In this latest work the image is composited with repeating patterns of dots to suggest, at least in my mind, that we also have a digital persona.

Our online persona is not directly within our control. Moving through digital space, we leave traces that can be accumulated into a profile that is more real in a sense than any other public or private persona. It is a fingerprint that defines who we are for commercial purposes and increasingly to government agencies. The idea that we are being profiled using buying patterns and online remarks may be distasteful but it is a fact of life.

Those of us who lived in the pre-digital era often have a sense that privacy is being lost in the ‘new’ digital era. That may be true. It may be equally true that we could always be profiled by anyone who was willing to put forth sufficient effort. Interestingly, there is now a thriving market for individuals who possess skills to custom tailor online information. As digital profiles are increasing used to target us, we are finding ways to obfuscate our online presence.

The slapstick of Spy vs Spy is an amusing analogy for the digital game of privacy. It is the black hats and white hats endlessly dancing in a dark comedy. We live in a highly amplified technological world. There is a price to be paid for all those wonderful services and conveniences.

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The North America calendar
Weeks starting on Sunday.

Phototrice Photo Calendar No. 17 – North America

The International calendar
Weeks starting on Monday.

Phototrice Photo Calendar No. 17 – International


Author: Ken

Avid photographer and old guy technologist.