Remains (2007-2009)

Video games are a unique medium in that it is an engaging medium rather than a passive one. What was once considered a fad has only grown in popularity over time as I believe this immersive entertainment fulfills a need that is connecting with a large audience across the world. Camaraderie, a sense of belonging, and violence are all on offer on this virtual playground. For those of us longing for a group of likeminded people, games offer a safe place to accomplish a straightforward goals which can be clearly measured and defined. There is little ambiguity in a place where everything can be accounted for, unlike the outside world. The team aspect of the game is due-fully missing from these still images, as you can't hear the laughter and frustrations that comes with working together and having things go horribly awry with no consequence. What we're left with like all snapshot photographs, is the memory of a moment in passing.

For a couple of years I played a team based first person shooter called Team Fortress 2. One of the modes has you work with six other players to work towards a common goal while killing the enemy team along the way. When you are "fragged," or killed, by the enemy team, the game creates a screenshot of the player who killed you a few seconds after your death. The "kill cam", which is a trope of this genre, creates the illusion of a photographer at war with you. This photographer's only job is to photograph your killer seconds after your death. When the AI photographer makes this image of playful revenge in this familiar snapshot aesthetic, it serves to further immerse the player in this world.