Our filter-friendly life is coming under so much scrutiny lately. First, hipster Barbie touched a nerve by parodying all the stereotypes of the Instagram hashtag #liveauthentic. Now, Chompoo Baritone, a Thai photographer based in Bangkok, has published a new series of picturesthat reveal all the messy reality we usually crop from our social media shots.
It’s the predictable round up of relaxing work spaces, quiet alone time in the sun, glamorously plated fresh vegetables and—of course—a copy of indie lifestyle magazine Kinfolk. But in Baritone’s photos, the rest of the scene remains in the frame: curious pets and onlookers, messy plates of food, clothes piled on the bed.
This is why I find the #nofilter tag so amusing. Even if you don't apply one of Instagram's preset filters, the mere act of photography is a form of filtering. It's not just what you crop out of the photo, but how many pics you toss before finding one suitable for sharing with your social media following.
Kylie Jenner, someone you might call a “selfie professional,” admits to taking about 500 selfies for everyone one she publishes. You can see that as vain, if you'd like, but in a world where that digital photo is reputational currency, especially for a celebrity who most people won't ever see in person, it is also rational behavior.