Who am I?

We were given the last project before the holidays, which is to film a self portrait. It got me thinking what am I really like, and how can I describe it, most of all, how could I show it on film? I went home during the Easter break and filmed some material, and it was quite good to be back in Finland because that’s where I’m from and that’s what probably describes me the best. We are going to do the editing next week and I still need to film a couple of bits for it but I’m hoping either my boyfriend or one of my mates could film the last shots I need. Planning the project, I thought it would be a good idea to put up photos, which I find describe me well. I found it as a good way to prepare myself for the self portrait, and because it was a good excuse to put up more photos as we only did one photography project, haha. Here are five photos, which I think describe me really well.

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I laugh a lot. And smile a lot. Once my workmate told me she couldn’t see me at uni but could hear me… 😀 I think that tells something about my laugh. And I think I’m just loud and talk a lot in general. I have a really positive outlook to life and I try not to worry about the future (or uni work, teehee). I don’t want to waste a day worrying (even thought sometimes I do find myself stressing and worrying about silly things but then my boyfriend gives me a really tight squeeze and reminds me not to worry). I find running help with stress and this semester I have notices that I’ve been taking it a bit easier and haven’t been stressing loads if I haven’t had time to do something.

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That gets us to the next picture, which is me eating a yogurt pot. I eat really healthily and exercise every week. I don’t particularly like crisps or sweets, and quite a few people find it absurd and weird. I’ve been told I’m the healthiest person on this planet, which obviously isn’t true, but when I’m getting an apple or a sweet pepper out of my bag to have a snack next to people munching on pasties and chocolate bars, it’s not hard to point out the contrast.  I mean, I like a bit of chocolate every once in a while, and at the moment I’m more than addicted to chocolate peanut butter, but I prefer vegetables to potatoes with my chicken and fish, and absolutely love tiring my muscles with squats.

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On the contrary, I love my phone a bit too much sometimes. I can spend hours scrolling through Instagram and Facebook, looking at pictures on Weheartit or Tumblr, and reading either Finnish or English news. I don’t know how I do it and sometimes I wish I could just put my phone down and enjoy the moment. It’s not easy being a media student… 😀 I also text my parents and sister on Whatsapp throughout the day, and we usually skype every Sunday, as they all live in Finland. It’s a bit difficult sometimes when I have something urgent or I’m really excited about something and I don’t get an instant reply. Damn you, two hour time difference. 😀 And part of it might be me being very impatient sometimes.

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But when it comes to painting my nails, I have all the patience in this world! I paint my nails literally every other day. It makes me feel relaxed and I feel such satisfaction when I finish doing my nails and they look pretty. I own probably over 200 nail polishes and gave some old ones away as presents last Christmas, haha. My friends were very thankful. Even though I have so many different colours I still look through new released nail polish collections and build lists in my head of colours I would like. Mainly I wear different shades of red, but occassional blues, purples, and nudes. Now that the summer is coming I’ll have to get my pastel and neon shades out, woohoo!

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But as I said, most of the time I do find it difficult to focus on one thing. I can’t keep my motivation up to read loads of research material – I have to have a break of editing pictures or having a snack in between. Even though, flying to Finland I could focus on my essay for whole two hours, so it might just be that I get easily distracted, haha. But if there is something I’m passionate about, I will get it done. And most of the time I have a really good motivation in doing well with uni stuff and will aim for high marks. I also noticed that if I underline text as I read it, I remember more of it. I can read pages of text but not remember any of it if I don’t think about it, haha! It might have something to do with being bilingual though. I can easily ignore all the English speaking people around me if I want to. 😀 Anyway, that’s what I’m like, and I hope I can get some of it through my video project. I have really enjoyed this course and will obviously carry on my personal blog. I have definitely got more ideas to make my personal blog more versatile. We still have a couple of weeks left and hopefully some more interesting topics to go through. 🙂

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Thoughts about photography

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We have been talking about photography in a module called Media Technology, and a couple of weeks ago I wrote a post about the same topic on my personal blog. I thought now that we are going through photography in this module it would make sense to put my thoughts about it up on here, too.  Basically, we talked about the meanings of photography, and the reasons why we take pictures (even in situations you maybe shouldn’t). I mean, if something out of ordinary happens, for example somebody gets in a fight, there will always be people taking a video instead of trying to calm the situation. The question we ask is why, why does this happen? Do we have an exceptional need to document everything to have a proof that the exact thing happened? Do we show the video clip of the fight to our mates to prove that we were there? I find the topic so interesting that I’m thinking about answering the essay question about it.

Another thing I found really interesting is the question do we take photographs, or do we make them? During the lecture I thought that professional photo shoots with models and make-up and dressing assistants is what you can call making a photograph because so much effort is put into a single photograph. Later on I had a vision of a photo I wanted for my blog in my mind, so I got my camera out and asked my mate to take a couple of shots. I had to change the idea a little bit because it was raining and I wanted to protect my camera rather than be holding the umbrella in the picture, but I thought the shots turned out pretty good anyway. When I got home I opened them on a photo editor and edited them the way I liked -adding light, contrast, sharpness and saturation, and took a look at the unedited photo. I realised the original was quite different to the edited one, and it hit me – I can also make photographs, not only take them. There is always an idea behind the photos I want to take, which is probably partly because I think of posting photos I take on my blog when I take them. I don’t think I would go taking photos and not think about editing them and putting them up for the world to see because through the five years of blogging it’s become a part of me.

It’s not all so simple though, and there are a lot of different cases out in the oh-so-big world of the internet. I don’t think editing photos is cheating, or tricking the audience. Some people, on the other hand, might say that enhancing images and removing spots or dark circles is alternating the reality. There’s a lot of talk about super-edited photos in magazines and how it affects the self-esteem of teenagers. The phenomenon is quite the same in the world of bloggers, who are often flawlessly beautiful and perceived as perfect role models. The fact is they only post the good few pictures, and you don’t often see the world famous bloggers posing without make-up in their trackies. Then again, on other social media forms, for example on Instagram you might see the most popular bloggers and celebrities show their bare faces or lazy day looks. Even though the internet is leading us into thinking that the most important thing is to look flawless, celebrities and bloggers every now and then write posts to prove they are not perfect and that they too have lazy make up free days. There is a certain reputation and image people try to keep up online. You’re more likely to see a post celebrating a successful application of winged eyeliner than mascara all over the eyelids. I am not quite sure where the phenomenon of wanting to seem perfect online comes from but I shall have to admit to doing it sometimes too. I’m especially careful if I’m posting a picture on Instagram, and a bit of editing always goes to the pictures I post. I wouldn’t say I take it too far though, and there are a lot of accounts on Instagram who only post pictures of cups of tea on white tables, and Victoria’s secret body sprays perfectly lined up.

The rest is free for a debate, I suppose. I don’t think I really have a clear opinion whether people should show their real life more, or just be aware of the things that might not be shown. I mean, everybody has days when they just can’t be asked, and there’s no need to post it on Instagram or on their blog. The angle, lighting and colours of the picture change the atmosphere quite as much as the editing done afterwards. I just wanted to put a couple of thoughts up and maybe provoke some conversation, or at least some thoughts. Next time you see a perfect picture of a bowl of porridge, there’s probably a load of washing up next to it on the kitchen table that’s just been cropped off. One often believes what is shown rather than thinks what is hidden but maybe we should open our eyes and realise that nobody is perfect.