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Nostalgia and Authenticity i submit that we have chosen to create and view faux-vintage photos because they seem more authentic and real. One does not need to be consciously aware of this when choosing the filter, hitting the like button on Facebook or reblogging on Tumblr. We have associated authenticity with the style of a vintage photo because, previously, vintage photos were actually vintage. They stood the test of time, they described a world past, and, as such, they earned a sense of importance. People are quite aware of the power of vintage and retro as carriers of authenticity. Sharon zukin s book naked City expertly describes the recent gentrification of inner cities as the quest for authenticity, often in the form of grit and decay. For those born in the plastic, inauthentic world of suburban Disneyfied and McDonaldized America, there has been a cultural obsession with decay ( decay porn ) and a search for authentic reality in our simulated world (as jean baudrillard might say).

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And by making our digital photos appear physical, we are attempting to purchase the cachet and importance that physicality imparts. Ive noted in the past this trend to endow the physical with a special importance. I commented on the bias to view physical books as more deep than digital text. I also critiqued those who label digital activism slacktivism and those who view digital communication as inherently shallow. Why would we grant the physical photo special importance? Perhaps the answer is because the physical photograph was scarce. Producing a photo took longer and cost more money prior to the advent of digital photography. This is one of the main differences between atoms and bits: the former is scarce and the later is abundant; something I have written about before. That an old photo was taken and has survived grants it an authority that the equivalent digital photo taken today cannot achieve. In any case, that the faux-vintage photograph aspires to physicality is only part of why review they have become so massively popular.

Indeed, this is Marcel Proust s favorite topic: the ways in which sensory stimuli have great power to invoke overwhelmingly strong feelings and vivid memories of father's the past; precisely the nostalgic feelings that faux-vintage photos seek to invoke. Faux-Physicality as Augmented reality One important way in which the digital photo does this is by looking like it is not a digital photo at all. For many, and especially those using faux-vintage apps, photography is primarily experienced in the digital form: snapped on a digital camera and stored and shared via digital albums on computers and websites like facebook. But just as the rise and proliferation of the mp3 is coupled with the resurgence of vinyl, there is a similar reclaiming of the aesthetic of the physical photo. Physicality, with its weight, smell and tactile interaction, grants a significance that bits have not (yet) achieved. The quickest way to invoke nostalgia for a time past with a photograph is to invoke the properties of the physical, which is done by mimicking the ravages of time through fading, simulated film grain and scratches as well as the addition of what appears. This follows the trend of what I have labeled augmented reality : the fact that physical and digital are increasingly imploding into each other.

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So far I have described what faux-vintage photography is and noted that it is a new trend, comes primarily from smartphones and has proliferated on social remote media sites like facebook, tumblr and others. However, the important question remains: why this massive popularity of faux-vintage photographs? What I want to argue is that the rise of the faux-vintage photo is an attempt to create a sort of nostalgia for the present, an attempt to make our photos seem more important, substantial and real. We want to endow the powerful feelings associated with nostalgia to our lives in the present. And, ultimately, all of this goes well beyond the faux-vintage photo; the momentary popularity of the hipstamatic-style photo serves to highlight the larger trend of our viewing the present as increasingly a potentially documented past. In fact, the phrase nostalgia for the present is borrowed from the great philosopher of postmodernism, Fredric Jameson, who states that we draw back from our immersion in the here and now and grasp it as a kind of thing.* The term nostalgia was coined. By the 19th century the word morphs from a physical to a psychological descriptor, not just about the longing of a place, but also a longing for a time past that, except through reminders, one can never return.

Susan Sontag, poets and Scribes? Another reason for the rise of faux-vintage photography might be that these apps allow us to be more creative with our photos. Susan Sontag in the wonderful, on Photography discusses how photography is always both the capturing of truth as well as a subjective creation. In this sense, when taking a photograph we are at once both poets and scribes; a point that I have used to describe our self-documentation on social media: we are both telling the truth about our lives as scribes, but always doing so creatively like. So, if photography is not only about remembering, it is also about creating, then the rise of smartphones and photo apps have democratized the tools to create photos that emphasize art, not just truth. But, again, this explanation would only explain why we might want to manipulate photos in the first place. It does not explain why so many of us have so often chosen to manipulate them into looking specifically retro/vintage. Part II: Grasping for Authenticity.

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This trend was made possible due to the rise of smartphones because smartphone photography has at least three important differences from the previous (and increasingly endangered) point-and-shoot digital cameras: (1) your smartphone is more likely to be on you all the time, even while sleeping. Thus, the photos you take are more likely to be social (opposed to for personal consumption only) because the camera is now always with you in social situations, and, most importantly, the device is connected to the web and exists within a series of other apps. Beyond being social, the applications make it far easier to apply different filters write to photos than did point-and-shoot cameras or using photo editing software on your computer. But the question i am asking with this essay is not just about the rise of digitally manipulated social photography, but why these digitally manipulated photos showing up in our social media streams are manipulated specifically to look vintage. Why do so many of us prefer to take, share and view these faux-aged photos? Is Picture-quality the reason?

Perhaps, as another blogger noted, it is the low quality of phone cameras that has lead to the rise of faux-vintage. Maybe the current quality of smartphone cameras tends to produce stale photographs which are then made more interesting when given a faux-vintage filter? Photographers have long known that, depending on the situation, a gritty photo can be as good as or better than a technically perfect shot, and now everyone with a smartphone can take an interesting picture with just one additional press of a button. . But, this explanation does little to explain why we equate vintage with interesting in the first place. Also, many current smartphone cameras are of high quality.

Those smartphone apps have made it so one no longer needs the ravages of time or to learn Photoshop skills to post a nicely aged photograph. In this essay, i hope to show how faux-vintage photography, while seemingly banal, helps illustrate larger trends about social media in general. The faux-vintage photo, while getting a lot of attention in this essay, is merely an illustrative example of a larger trend whereby social media increasingly force us to view our present as always a potential documented past. But we have a ways to go before i can elaborate on that point. Some technological background is in order.


The first very popular app that made your photographs instantly retro was Hipstamatic app. Instagram is even more powerful with its selection of multiple filters, that is, different flavors of vintage (a few not-so-vintage filters are available, too). Instagram also features a popular social networking layer that allows users to contribute and view a stream of Instagram photos with friends. Other retro photography applications are available as well. What do these apps do? Among other things, they fade the image (especially at the edges adjust the contrast and tint, over- or under-saturate the colors, blur areas to exaggerate a very shallow depth of field, add simulated film grain, scratches and other imperfections and. And, importantly for the next post, the photos are often made to mimic being printed on real, physical photo paper. And many of our Facebook, tumblr, Twitter, etc. Streams have become the home to one of these vintage-looking photos after another.

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Subscribe to my channel). I am working on a dissertation about self-documentation and social media and have decided to take on theorizing the rise of faux-vintage photography gender (e.g., hipstamatic, Instagram). From may 10-12, 2011, i posted a three part essay. This post combines all three together. Part I: Instagram and Hipstamatic, part II: Grasping for Authenticity, part iii: Nostalgia for the Present a recent snowstorm in DC: taken with Instagram and reblogged by npr on Tumblr. Part I: Instagram and Hipstamatic, this past winter, during an especially large snowfall, my facebook and Twitter streams became inundated with grainy photos that shared a similarity beyond depicting massive amounts of snow: many of them appeared to have been taken on cheap Polaroid. However, the photos were all taken recently using a popular set of new smartphone applications like. The photos (like the one above) immediately caused a feeling of nostalgia and a sense of authenticity that digital photos posted on social media often lack. Indeed, there has been a recent explosion of retro/vintage photos.

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Do you need balance in the body paragraphs or take a side? Is the thesis different for each essay type? How should the conclusion look? In this video, we look at how to assess the task, understand the instructions, and how to write the discussion essay. Ielts academic: Discussion essay with and without an opinion: Topic: internet. Ielts academic: Discussion essay with and without an opinion: Topic: education. Need ideas for your essays? Check out our ideas e-book. Want to see best more great videos?

I think, while much of that came naturally for my dad and i, i also tried to emulate them. One specific example of how Full house affected my life was my growing need to be grounded. In my neighborhood, all of the girls were a bit older that. A year or so, here and there, but the only real difference between them and me was that they were constantly being grounded. I had never been grounded and I thought. Ielts full Essay (band 9 discuss with, without Opinion, the ielts writing section Task 2 essay may ask you to discuss a topic, compare two views, or show the advantages and disadvantages of something. They may also ask you to give your own opinion. The approaches to an essay with and without an opinion can be very similar or very different.

So, we rushed through the morning eating breakfast and blow-drying my hair all at plan once, only to be exceedingly relieved when we discovered that I had afternoon class. I feel very lucky to be able to compare my family to the tanners. Although I have a mother, and certainly no Uncle jessie, i have always seen similarities. J., i grew up in a very loving and supportive family. My parents always encouraged me to get a good education, and follow my dreams at the same time. My dad, who i sometimes call. Clean behind his back, reminds me of Danny tanner in more than a few ways. While similar facial features make the comparison nearly eerie, their mutual zest for a clean house is where it really hits home.

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When I look back at my childhood, i see it as a highly colored, exaggerated version of what it must have been. Everything seems brighter, and bigger than reality allows. Its the ideal childs world, full of Barbies, dress-up, and playgrounds. But, if I try hard enough, i can remember the feeling of being there. The feeling of being small, and nearly innocent. Most of the time when I think of my childhood, i look back on two specific years, kindergarten and first grade, and the summers before and after the two. Both of these took place in Schaumburg, Illinois, in a two-bedroom town-home that I still call my old house even though its not that anymore. Im not sure if these are the years I simply show more paper content, we all woke up late, but I just couldnt face the first day of school without that perfect coif.


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