In just the last few years, our world has become flooded with imagery; not that it hasn’t been floating all around us already, but alas we are fully submerged. Due to defining contemporary technologies and the disposition of mediums in this accelerated day, the quality of a memory becomes lost in the digital sea. Can anyone guess what new technology and new medium I’m referencing? Well, specifically the technology is apple’s sly new camera, I mean computer, I mean phone… yeah that’s it, the iPhone and the licentious medium is… yeah you’re right, it couldn’t be anything else but the social media site, Facebook.
With the quick click of your cat’s favorite chew toy and with the easy access to relatively good resolution in a just as easily disposable and non wallet tugging way, creates a serving dish for hundreds of your ‘closest’ friends to be notified about your questionably composed, poorly lit, insipid, ungarnished meal of well I don’t really know what that is exactly but I do know that 20 minutes later I’ll be notified about an image of an empty plate with the caption “that was so good!” revealing you did indeed, finish your vegetables this evening.
The point I’m making here is that we’ve become obsessed with documenting every second of our lives. Now, the entire society can see the satisfying addiction of what this sirens song had caught professional photographer’s for nearly the last two centuries. But, back then (dating “far” into the time machine as 10 years ago) a photographer focused on their niche and the photography was valued, and well studied. They learned about the magic of light, the matters of culture, the presence of emotion, and about the silent moments between. The world of today has become impulsive with their ids striking more rapidly than ever before, demanding the quickest, cheapest way of going about any process in their life.
Unfortunately, photography has become a leader in this realm. The standards have diminished increasingly just as fast as their Freudian structural hyperactivity. Don’t get my wrong, I’m all for change. I love evolution and the innovative designers of our world. Photography is a platform for another construction to leap off from, like everything that has come before (just look at the concept of our mentioned star, the phone. Look what a “phone” can do now!) I’m just saying that we should be careful not to take away the precious vulnerability of a memory.
My life revolves around studying imagery of the past, of our present, and creating in my mind the imagery of our future. My conscious thought is trained to see every day life as a photograph while I sit and review actual photographs over and over again, and every once in awhile an image will stop me. It will evoke a deep routed feeling and momentarily complex my engines. I, as many other visionaries do, will sit with the photograph, and wonder what it has done to me. And why has it done this to me? Images like this reminds me of what is so unique to human beings. It is the fact that we feel compassion. This emotion links us to the entire human race and to all living beings on this planet. A photograph of a child struck with wonderment while the world around her less engaged, moving more quickly through their lives is the siren that captured photographers before, an emotion of one moment in time.
“Photography records the gamut of feelings written on the human face, the beauty of the earth and skies that man has inherited, and the wealth and confusion man has created. It is a major force in explaining man to man.”
“Simply look with perceptive eyes at the world about you, and trust to your own reactions and convictions. Ask yourself: Does this subject move me to feel, think and dream? Can I visualize a print – my own personal statement of what I feel and want to convey – from the subject before me?”
My friends, be cautious of your visual information drifting through the endless waves of the digital sea. The flow denotes turbulence.