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Fieldnotes: Body labour and selfies


“In the flesh, these microcelebrities seem to have mastered the practice of displaying their camera ready face – head slightly tilted to emphasize oneʼs chin and elongate the face; eyebrows slightly raised and eyelids lifted to give the illusion of larger, rounder eyes; pursed lips and a tightening of the cheek muscles to accentuate oneʼs cheekbones; shoulders slightly raised so that oneʼs collarbones are given more prominence; tummies sucked in with a hand pinched to one side of the waist to highlight a slim but hour-glass figure; one foot shifted slightly to the front with heels off the floor and a slight tiptoe, so the body leads forward to lengthen oneʼs frame – all this intricate transitory bodily emotion work in a matter of a couple of seconds, in a bid to convey intimacy with their fans while conscientiously curating their self-presentation.”

– snippets from my fieldnotes, June 2013

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