In a day and age where there are millions and millions of photographers and 350-million photos are uploaded every day to Facebook there seems to be something missing for me. Maybe it was the feeling of picking up the small 5×6 envelope with negatives neatly tucked into their special pouch. Perhaps it was the faint smell from the developing chemicals still clinging to each print. Or it might have been the excitement I had when I thumbed through each photograph to see the fruits of my labor.
Call me a romantic, but there is something fantastic that happens when you hold a photo in your hands. It’s intimate. It’s personal and eternal. To me, they took away the romance of photography when everything went social. To me, photographs are a lasting reminders of what has come to pass, whether good or bad. They can bring comfort in tough times and joy in simple times. They are, in a sense, a vivid story imprinted on the humble material of paper and plastic. Photographs are a testament to our lives. They are the story of our lives.
You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.
Photograph for me is a glimpse of life itself. A split second of eternity, captured forever. It is a slice of someone’s life that is suspended in time exactly as it was in that precise moment. CLICK!
In my book Framing Faith, I talk about how photographs are timeless, wordless, soundless pieces of our lives. They are images of significance that have affected us, changed us for good or bad, moved us to laughter or to tears, and have defined us. I have a vast selection of images that I cherish as some of my most prized possessions. Just recently I found one photograph that I did not even know existed until combing through photo albums at my parents house. It’s an image that stands above all the rest for me. It’s a photo filled with happiness. I was two-years-old. My dad and I are standing at the edge of the sea holding hands. My how time has passed and how the world has changed. When I look at this image all of the tensions and worries that I may have get swept out into the deep waters, leaving me with all the sweetness of the world.
What photograph do you cherish and what memories does it stir in you?