American photographer Eric Pickersgill’s new photo series titled “Removed” shows people in everyday life absorbed with their digital devices, but with one minor adjustment — the devices themselves are missing.
The sad photo project was inspired by an observation Pickersgill made one morning while sitting in a local café:
Family sitting next to me at Illium café in Troy, NY is so disconnected from one another. Not much talking. Father and two daughters have their own phones out. Mom doesn’t have one or chooses to leave it put away. She stares out the window, sad and alone in the company of her closest family. Dad looks up every so often to announce some obscure piece of info he found online. Twice he goes on about a large fish that was caught. No one replies. I am saddened by the use of technology for interaction in exchange for not interacting. This has never happened before and I doubt we have scratched the surface of the social impact of this new experience. Mom has her phone out now.
At first the pictures appear to be digitally altered. But the surreal effect is not the result of post-production. Pickersgill actually removed the devices from his subjects’ grip after asking them to hold their stare and posture, before taking the shot. The resulting images exaggerate the effect.
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