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If there is one photographer that has really been capturing our attention lately, it’s been Babycakes Romero. While it was only recently that we stumbled across his submission on Bored Panda, we were instantly hooked. What he photographs is not what is considered traditionally “pretty “. It’s gritty, but it’s real and has a message to send the viewer that is clear and can even be touching.

Most of his content captures modern day dilemmas, scenes, and snippets. From found objects, writing, or people, many of his series convey a feeling or sentiment that can be felt by both photographer and onlooker.

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This specific collection of photographs makes for a great example of Romero’s work. Titled “The Death of Conversation”, the photographer takes snaps of people who are surrounded by company, but only focused intently on their phones. You can see couples, friends, coworkers, and presumably even families being consumed by these little gadgets. No one can deny this unfortunate trend. It is so relevant to our lives in this day and age that interaction has overwhelmingly become limited and/or under-appreciated. Romero states:

“I started to photograph people in company on their phones as there was a certain symmetry to them and it appealed on a visual level, but as I continued I noticed an inherent sadness to the proceedings. Before mobile phones were invented, people would have had no choice but to interact. However, that is no longer necessary as we can all now ‘pretend’ we are doing something ‘important on our devices rather than think of something to say. This is killing conversation. I believe it’s increasing social pain.”

Despite prefacing this with saying that he acknowledges that portable technology has played a huge role in facilitating our daily lives, the above cannot be denied. In one way, we are constantly connected – thanks to our countless feeds, pictures, and messaging – but on the other hand, we hardly try to form real relationships and connections with others in the physical world anymore. There has been evidence that this has a negative impact on our society and emotions. Is there a way to bring “face-to-face chat” back?

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babycakes romero death of conversation 12All images via Bored Panda

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How do you think portable tech is affecting our lives?

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