Friday, 23 January 2015

Warning: Flash Photography Can Be Damaging...

Has anyone told those poor lambs on the red carpet yet?

Just about any news segment these days comes with a warning of: Be careful, there is a bit of flash photography coming up! and do you know what, I look away. It's only natural when someone tells you that it might be damaging to you.

We have all got the odd photo of ourselves where we might resemble a werewolf at one extreme or appear to have had a little bit too much fondness for the bottle on the other extreme. The red eye is not only an early plane ride but the bane of many " surprise " photos.

Who doesn't freeze up as soon as you know a camera is upon you. A couple of thoughts literally race across our brain...

Which side is my good side / should I smile / should I look slightly up or down / oh god, this flash will make me close my eyes...
but when that flash goes off, it takes a while to see anything apart from a bright light!

No, it can't be healthy. No, it doesn't make us look that much prettier and in any case, at times that stupid flash only points a magic marker to wrinkles.

Pure amateur stuff. But what about the celebrities who endure eons of flashes going off in their direction? Goodness, at least now I know why they tend to favour dark sunglasses. Not only to hide a hangover but make it possible to stand there with their eyes closed behind said sunglasses. At least I would do that.

The more I think about this, the more admiration I have for those caught by hundreds of flashes going off aimed in their direction ( we only get to see the reflections of flashes ). Remember how bizarre it was when we saw Prince William and Catherine's engagement announcement?

To blame is our insatiable appetite for any tidbit, morsel, photo, and a reason why they are paid millions. Would we still see their latest movie, creation or gamesmanship if they didn't strike the pose in front of a barrage of flashes? Ah, who knows...

In the next few weeks the World Cup of Flash photography is coming up. The annual Oscars. The slow parade over a lengthy red carpet can't be much of a picnic. These stars have the constitution of oxen it seems. Parading from one set of flash photography to the next. But what about us? I think the red carpet snooping before the Oscars needs to be augmented by a sturdy pair of dark sunglasses...

Biggi