The Vampiric Lack of Pictures

By Alexander Kratochwill

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Why are there so few photographs that I post here? Surely there must be lots of people dressing up as vampires, either as fans at various conventions or as role-players for the many LARP events that are out there.

But then, what is it that really makes a vampire? Aside from the sparkling kind we were presented with in Twilight and the very ugly kind we see in Nosferatu, vampires usually are portrayed as very good in keeping a good cover – not ageing. The one thing they have in common are their fangs, and the need to remain undetected.

Most vampire stories – yes, even the sparkling ones – tell us that vampires make it their job to avoid the limelight. Makes perfect sense too! You wouldn’t want to upset the flock before feeding on the poor creatures, right? Or worse yet, have the entire lot of mortals fight back. While in a fight between a single human against a single vampire, the mortal would certainly end up as dinner, dozens of humans against one vampire would shift the odds in their favour.

The White Wolf games call this principle the Masquerade. Remain hidden. Don’t let mortals catch on, so that you can hunt safely. Ever stalking. Ever undetected. But it’s not only in those games that we find this very basic principle. Hell, even the Cullens adhere to that rule, despite lengthy speeches on how they are the most dangerous predator ever to walk the earth (and I still don’t see how glimmering plays into that, but maybe that’s just me).

Hunting alone isn’t the problem though. It is just one thing you can’t have humans know about. On top of that, however, you can’t let them realise that there are creatures amongst them that just won’t age. Had a nice party with a couple of girls last night? Well, nowadays you’d better pray none of them took a selfie with you accidentally showing up in the background. Because if you do, twenty years from now people will notice that you, unlike everyone else, don’t have wrinkles. Or perhaps that you still look exactly the same as you did on that cheap shot you used for your driver’s license or ID.

All in all, vampires really can’t be too careful these days when cameras are everywhere and even speeding is more of a risk than meets the eye. Come to think of it… That’d be something. A vampire plot falling to pieces because someone was caught going at 60 km/h in a 30 km/h zone. That’d be the day.

With vampire paranoia being part of many vampire stories, you can see why it would be hard to discover them just like that. In fact, they do have very good reasons not to be found, making portraying one, no matter the purpose, all the more hard.

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