My parents were not the kind to capture moments on film. Therefore, there are very few photos of me as a child… or anyone else, for that matter. I don’t know why that is, exactly. Maybe that’s something to ask them about… but I digress.
(Already? You usually don’t digress until somewhere in the middle of a post? I know, right?)
In my first marriage, we took more photos than my parents had, especially of the children. Consequently, there are lots of photos for my children and grandson to look through. But not nearly as many as my sister has of her family! And she was right on top of technology where I was not, so she has videos, as well. She probably has some of me, not that I’d know since we never watch them. <<< Remember this, we’ll come back to it later.
When I moved to Canada, I wanted my family to see where I lived, so I’d buy throw-away cameras from the grocery store and take lots of photos of leaves and snow and stuff. I was from sunny-California and this crazy place had (still has) four actual seasons!
The first photo I took was of a tree with the leaves of reds, oranges and golds, the likes of which I’d never seen! It was torture having to wait three days to see the prints! Although, that can not be compared to the seven days or more of the olden-1970s. But yes, I digress (again).
After a few years, I bought a second-hand digital camera off a Facebook friend for $50. It was a big deal for me. A real camera! Then, I took my photos, ran home and downloaded them onto our computer. Sometimes, if I was feeling super-ritzy, I’d go to the UPS store and have them printed on glossy paper. And then, of course, there came a time when I could buy my own glossy paper and print them out at home. My, how times flies. Or not.
Since having a cell phone camera to take photos and share them (for goodness sakes!), I’ve been a picture-takin’ fool. I bet I’ve deleted more photos than I’ve saved, at this point. (And I’ve saved thousands!) I’m all-over Instagram and Facebook (and even here, to a certain extent) sharing the photos I take on my way to work… every day, whenever possible. I love sharing the beauty that surrounds me!
Then I read something like: “Just because we can capture the moment, doesn’t mean we should.” It led me to this article… which led me to many others. The best among them (in my not-so humble opinion) is here. In it, the author (Valerie Alexander) asks: “Seriously, is there anyone who went to Woodstock who can’t remember what it felt like being there because they were too busy filming it?”
Well, no, Valerie, there isn’t!
More than a few times recently, I’ve thought of this…
I’d stop next to the water (my fave spot) and pull out my phone to take a photo. Then I put the phone down and enjoy the glimmer of the sun off the water and listen to the waves lap onto the shore. The lake where I live is so different from the ocean waves of the Pacific Ocean. It’s a whole different sound and energy… gentle, in comparison to the power of the ocean. Both beautiful, of course. I so want to share it with you! But maybe… just maybe… it’s just for me?
I don’t know what I really think of all this. I’m certainly not suggesting that we never take photos, just as those who have written about this topic before me don’t. However, going back to my sister and her videos… how often do we look at all those albums of pictures or re-watch those videos? Some are wonderful to have, of course, but others? Kind of a waste. Do you agree?
For me, my morning photos are as much for me as for those who enjoy them with me. I think of them as a kind of… art… and even (if I may be so bold) spiritual practice.
I don’t want to stop taking them.
The 800 (give or take 20) I have of my grandson – who isn’t even school-aged yet – maybe not necessary? Here he is turning his head right, left, looking up, looking down, looking at his hand, looking at my hand, closing his eyes halfway, all the way, etc. A great example is the featured photo for this post. I mean, c’mon. Do I need an inch-by-inch photo series?
Also, those who follow me on Facebook will be happy to know that I’m going to *try my best* to stop sharing pictures of my adorable husband, our cats and plates of food.
Addendum: I’m not promising. Nope. Not gonna. And yes, isn’t my grandson precious? 💕