I saw my first “selfie stick” in 2014, during my visit to the 9/11 Memorial in New York. Four months later I was in Piazza San Marco in Venice and it seemed that everyone around me was taking photographs almost continuously. I was flicking through my sketchbook earlier today and found this page of sketches that I made over the course of about an hour whilst in Venice. I found a brief, perverse pleasure in drawing other people photographing themselves in front of Venice’s landmarks.
As John Ruskin wrote in Stones of Venice (1851-53) “You must either make a tool of the creature, or a man of him”. Were he to visit Venice now he would almost certainly decide that the tools have won.
Happy New Year.