Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Power of the Photogaphic Image...

   Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever. It remembers little things long after you have forgotten everything.

- Aaron Siskind

  Like elephants, photographs never forget.  Perhaps at times we wish they would.  Those old photographs of your awkward adolescence that mothers seem to love to drag out...well, they remember even if you wish to forget.

   Most people use photography that way; to remember things.  That sunset, that birthday party, that wonderful vacation...memories we want to re-live through the photographs.

   But photographs can also be seen as a journal of our souls development.  It records what we thought was important at that moment.  Looked at over time, we can see how our soul is evolving.  What was important to us a year ago may seem trivial now but it was all part of the journey.

    With the proliferation of cellphone cameras we always have at our fingertips the power to record the minutia of our lives.  What do these innumerable images, the countless "selfies", say about us in the end?  What is the digital footprint we are leaving behind? 

   At funerals now it is commonplace to present dozens of photographs of the person throughout their lives as if we are the sum total of all these captured moments.  It might be an interesting exercise to chose just three images you have made to represent you in a visual biography of sorts.  Which three photographs would you choose?  What do you want people to know most about you?  What would your digital footprint look like?

Speaking of elephants...

   I came across this article about the emotional life of elephants that blew me away.  I always knew they were very sentient creatures but this article highlights the amazing range of emotions of these wonderful beings, I can't think of them as "animals" anymore.


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