Photographer Removes Phones From His Photos To Show How Addicted We’ve Become To Technology

To convey society’s addiction to technology, the photographer removed all smartphones and digital devices from his portraits of everyday life.

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill


Despite the obvious benefits advances in technology have contributed to our society, the social and physical implications are slowly revealing themselves. Eric Pickersgill, an American photographer, took notice of the problem while in a New York cafe and, shortly after, decided to highlight the issue in a series of photos.

For project “Removed,” Eric removed all the smartphones and digital devices from his portraits of everyday life, in an attempt to show our addiction to technology and hyper-connectivity.  Bored Panda shares that he, too, is addicted to his phone, but became inspired to draw attention to the issue after a chance encounter in a New York Cafe.

“Family sitting next to me at Illium café in Troy, NY is so disconnected from one another,” Eric writes in his notes from that day. “Not much talking. Father and two daughters have their own phones out. Mom doesn’t have one or chooses to leave it put away. She stares out the window, sad and alone in the company of her closest family. Dad looks up every so often to announce some obscure piece of info he found online.”

The photographer achieved the surreal effect in his photos by asking strangers and friends to remain in position, then removed their cellphones before taking the shot.

Scroll through some of the photos from project “Removed” and view more of Eric’s work here.

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

“This phantom limb is used as a way of signaling busyness and unapproachability to strangers while existing as an addictive force that promotes the splitting of attention between those who are physically with you and those who are not”

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

“In similar ways that photography transformed the lived experience into the photographable, performable, and reproducible experience…”

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

“…personal devices are shifting behaviors while simultaneously blending into the landscape by taking form as being one with the body”

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Credit: Eric Pickersgill

Are you one of the many addicted to your phone or laptop? China is doing something drastic to combat technology addiction in teens. Read more about that here. 

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