‘I’ve never felt closer to the world’

Main Image Detail142252694 / Sally Anscombe / Flickr Select


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The Getty Images Flickr collection is an ever-growing community of real-life image makers. Photographers who have captured what they love – real people, real settings, real events as they unfold. These are uniquely personal images with an authenticity rare in stock photography.

We put a simple brief out to our Flickr contributors, looking for photos that fit the caption: “I never felt closer to the world!”. We wanted images that show our changed relationship with technology. They didn’t necessarily have to feature technology – we were really looking to the creativity around interpreting the idea of “connection”.

The competition was judged by members of the Getty Images Creative team in London and New York – here are the winning images that we felt most closely captured the spirit of the theme.

Sally Anscombe (England)
On her image of a boy talking to his mum via the internet:

“My interpretation of this brief was that thanks to modern technology we can now have a feeling of “closeness” with many people, be they business associates or loved ones, whatever the distance that separates us and this brings a more personal element to our business dealings and eases the pain of separation from loved ones. In my entry I tried to illustrate not only the comfort that can be obtained from the interaction that modern technology allows us but also how natural it is for our children to interact in this way.”


Lynn Koening (Canada)
On her image of two brothers sitting together on their computers:

"I chose children to embody the theme because they naturally have an ease with and enthusiasm for technology and wholeheartedly embrace the possibilities. These two boys, brothers and best friends, do everything together. They sat down on the same chair and immediately turned on their tablets and started playing an interactive word game with each other, while simultaneously playing someone in China, and an individual in Florida. The world is very close indeed."

Jill Tindall (England)
On her image of a brother and sister:

"My image shows a boy holding hands with his space-girl sister, perhaps stood on top of the world. The spacesuit represents something futuristic, optimistic and curious. Technology is about people and helping us feel close.”

Jekaterina Nikitina (Spain)
On her image of a woman working on a computer in the sunlight:

“I based on the interpretation of the word ‘World’, meaning both human civilized world and the planet Earth. The reflection of sun in the tablet gives a sense of energy flow and of connection between the technology and the nature. It reminds me of playing with sunbeams as a child too, which adds to the nostalgic mood.”

Allen Donikowski (Canada)
On his image of a boy using a tablet computer during a family plane trip:

“This image shows how younger children have the ability to so easily connect and use the new technology that is popping up around them. What interests me most about the image, is that Mom is sleeping while both of her boys are using this technology by her side. One is watching a video about the volcanoes we will be seeing, and the other is attacking pigs with angry birds to distract him from the engine noise. For us, as parents, the technology was a tool to occupy them during a long flight. For them, the technology is a way to learn and entertain themselves over a period of time that offers very little for a five year old or two year old to do. Looking around at other families on this particular flight, I noticed that there were no children that were not equipped with some form of advanced hand held technology, at least compared to what I had just 5 years ago. It has seemingly become a part of every carry on necessity for a family with young children. One can also view the image as how disconnected my boy appears from his family and the surroundings.  Focused on the new technology he holds in his hands, not interested in the sights and sounds offered by the plane he rides in and the world below.“

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