sometimes record, for those few who might read it.3
Albert Camus in The Stranger, his iconic novel first published in 1942, notoriously described this as the “tender indifference of the world”. The act of photography protects us from the disorientation of experiencing our lives in this random and chaotic world, and
from the isolation of existing in our own heads, dependent on an unreliable memory to tell us where we’ve been and a sense of optimism to tell us where we’re going.
Photography protects us from the fears engendered by our mortality and isolation by allowing us to fix in an image one of the fleeting moments in
our lives, to hold onto it and to show it to others, thus confirming our reality: “This is what I saw, what I did, who I am”. It gives us a physical memory we can hold onto as proof of our lives – I must be real if you can see me, too…
As digital cameras, social media and self publishing become ever more ubiquitous within our society, more and
more we have come to rely on others to watch us and to give us meaning. Susan Sontag described the camera as “[t]he device that makes real what one is experiencing”.4 It is also a fantastic tool for defining our identities. The question of identity, the fundamental “Who am I?” has been one of the hardest we have ever had to answer – nebulous, infinitely