Online: Réunion Fiction
by Beauchamp Art
A Life Like Image by Benjamin Beauchamp
After my peer received news that their place on Erasmus exchange in the Réunion Island was confirmed, they were rather elated, and to celebrate, I offered to make a quick mock-up of them there, using stock photos of the island from Google, and previous holiday photos taken from their Facebook. I crudely cobbled the two together, inserted them into the seascape, adding a small amount of reflection into the water and adjusting the light levels. However, as this was done with low-resolution images, I was limited as to how much detail I could go into with the manipulation, giving the picture an awkward lo-fi aesthetic that is deliberately not complicated and obviously edited.
Though intended for light-hearted purposes, this does effectively highlight the ease at which an individual can formulate their own fiction and fabricate photographic evidence of their exploits that have not happen, and share them through social media where they may be read as true. This is done badly to highlight the potential for falsifying images, rending the sanctity of photographic authentication null.
This could also be seen as a bizarre reference to the ‘Unpersoning’ of unwanted individuals in photos in the time of Stalinist Russia, and other such subsequent politicised photographic alterations; though this shows how basic such deviations from history can now be with Photoshop, and that every image that is encountered, especially in online format, should be thoroughly scrutinised for its authenticity.