Thursday, March 10, 2011

Please, close the windows to your souls.

 Here's one of many questions that have been rolling around in my mind lately.

Why do people like taking pictures of their eyeballs?  Why do they like posting their eyeball pictures on the Internet and passing them off as self-portraits? Why do authors in particular like doing this?

Are such photos supposed to make the subjects look mysterious? Insightful? Are they supposed to hypnotize readers into buying books?  I don't know. That's why I'm asking. 

Shamefully, I admit I considered doing this a few years ago. But when I tried photographing my own eye(s), the attempt didn't go so well. Not only couldn't I seem to hold the camera at the correct angle, which usually resulted in a shot of my forehead or of a few paltry lashes overwhelmed by surrounding wrinkles (which kind of looked like fly legs stuck in a spider web), but the flash nearly blinded me. 

In any case, the novelty of eyeball portraiture on profile pages has worn off -- at least for me. These ubiquitous photos creep me out.  I'm beginning to think the people who post them are all members of a secret society.

Here's a suggestion to folks who aren't members of a secret society but are maybe just bashful:  You might want to consider representing yourselves via other body parts.  I don't mean you should parade your privates. The 'Net already has a surfeit of exhibitionists.
(Of course, I'll make an exception for men with really extraordinary asses like the one on the left.  There can never be enough "art" photos of Grade-A manbutt.  I do ask, however, that guys who consider this option be objective in their assessment of their assets, lest the Web be flooded with pictures like the one on the right.)

What I mean is, you have toes, belly buttons, ears, noses, kneecaps, elbows -- all kinds of wonderful body parts. Please, shy people, consider taking snapshots of those. I need a change.


Val said...

I actually did the eyeball-as-icon thing for a while, and I thought I was being so original, ha, ha!

A good technique if you really want to do this is to have someone take your full face photo and then you can crop and resize it just to bring up the eye.

I also went with a great photo of a toad for a long time as an icon. Then I thought I should strive for some professionalism, and started consistently going with my current, more abstract icon.

BTW, I love the contrasting butts!

Tam said...

I guess the eye is more interesting than the ear and I really don't want to look up someone's nostrils. Cropping is definitely the way to go. Lips might not be bad though.

For a while with the teen set the thing to do was get 5 or 6 kids around in a circle, all put their foot in with toes touching and then take a picture of the shoes like a flower. Go figure. LOL A butt should would be good and hey, just crop something off the net, it's not like most people will ever know it's you or not. :-)

K. Z. Snow said...

Did you, Val? I don't remember that. God, it just seems I've been seeing those types of pictures everywhere (most recently in Wave's Jaye & Reno interview). Sometimes they show up as icons, but usually they appear on profile pages.

Of course, your solution to the problems I encountered is perfect-- although I abandoned the whole idea once I started seeing a plethora of eye photos and wondering, WTF is up with that? :)

K. Z. Snow said...

You're right, Tam. Eyes are lovely and intriguing ... but, man, they stop losing their impact when people are posting eye pix all over the Internet!

I'd definitely have to cop somebody else's body-part pic to represent me. There's nothing left on my carcass worth photographing! :-D

Jenre said...

Nice of you to show us a pic of JLA's hairy bottom :).

I've also noticed that there are a lot of pics of lips as icons - usually with something sinister lurking near the mouth like a spider or blood or something. The lips are usually siren red. I find these particularly off-putting.

I don't mind the eye thing, even if it has become a bit gimmicky. I suppose the eyes are one of the most personal parts of the body and so those icons are supposed to show a teasing hint of the author's personality - perhaps?

Anyway, I'll stick to my dino cos no-one wants to see a pic of my body parts :).

K. Z. Snow said...

ROFL, Jen! Actually, JLA's bottom is quite the opposite of that one. It's smooth and devoid of contours -- hell, it's virtually nonexistent -- which, I guess, makes it an "unbutt." ;-)

Yes, I've seen lips too, but not as often as I've seen eyes. I don't think they offer any glimpse whatsoever into personality, since eyes out of their facial context are essentially like pretty stones. They all look good but they're not sending me any messages (aside from woowoo, I'm in that cult too! *g*)

Val said...

I love the eye photo you posted up top. Is it a fish? A lizard? Very colorful.

K. Z. Snow said...

I'm not sure, Val, but it looks lizardish to me. Fish and amphibians don't seem to have that kind of skin.

Chris said...

I'm sticking with Mayhem's eyeball, presented sideways because she was sideways while I was not as I took the picture. I use that everywhere except on blogger. No particular reason that blogger's excluded, other than sheer laziness.

K. Z. Snow said...

That's different, Chris. Pet pix are always welcome. Even if the critters are sideways. Or wearing wigs. :)

Lily said...

I did have a few eye pics when I was using LiveJournal a while back. However, they were "doctored" pics. One had a heart for the pupil, one was rainbow colored and a couple flashed and/or had ornamentation around them. But none was my actual eye. :)

K. Z. Snow said...

Lily, you cheated! That's cool, too. :-D

Tracy said...

lol Very funny. I have to go take a picture of my toe now.

And yes - the eyeball pics freak me out.

K. Z. Snow said...

Hey, Tracy! I'm glad I'm not alone. (Are you going to paint your toenails first? Or put cute little decals on them? *g*)