Friday 26 December 2014

Vicki Notaro: Why I love selfies

TIME will tell: Previous 'Persons of The Year' include Hitler in 1938 and You in 2006
Vicki Notaro

I've been taking selfies for years. Long before the iPhone front camera, Instagram and celebrity interest, I had perfected turning my digital camera around to snap the perfect self portrait, holding the lens aloft with my right hand meaning only one of my chins was visible and allowing me one free arm to throw around a willing pal/animal/inanimate object.

Now with the advent of flattering filters and social media sharing, selfies are ubiquitous. I'm still a fan, but a lot more cautious about sharing them. Some people I follow online post daily selfies, some post "belfies" (backside selfies, for which we can blame Kim Kardashian), helfies (headless selfies to show off an outfit) et al.

However, fearful of being accused of inordinate vanity, I like to reserve mine for those special occasions when my eyeliner is particularly well flicked or I've had my hair done. After all, solo selfies are essentially admitting that you think you're looking damn good – otherwise why on earth would we share them?

Shameless posing aside, selfies with mates, celebs, pets and the likes are perfectly acceptable. Just be aware that the people who follow you online may become sick of the sight of your face – or worse, disappointed when they meet the less filtered, posed and generally realistic you in person.

That said, I'm not surprised selfies are so popular. There's something about "likes" online that makes you yearn for more. I suppose it's basic human nature to want to be aesthetically appreciated – and handily enough, regular selfies don't expose love handles.

Just be careful not to believe your own hype. After a couple of years of selfies, I found myself horrified to see candid pictures other people took of, gasp, my entire body. Still, a little perspective can only do you good in the long run, right?

Irish Independent

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