Why I take pictures (one reason)

Documentation can take me out of the moment or it can help me sink deeper into it. That's determined, I think, by whether I am doing it more for the product (the photo, the poem, etc.), which will exist only in the future, or for the process, which can take place only in the present.

And the process changes me; it changes the way I think and see and live.

Even if I don't have a camera, even if I don't take the picture, or even if the picture doesn't turn out — the fact that I often do have a camera and sometimes do take pictures puts me in the habit of asking, as I live my moments, is this beautiful / is this interesting / will i miss this when it's gone? Questions which keep me receptive and paying attention.

4 comments:

heather 2/28/2013 8:32 PM  

I miss so badly actually looking through a viewfinder, versus starting at a point and shoot screen. (Hopefully I can get a better camera soon.) I love that feeling of seeing in a viewfinder--the world is different, framed in, beautiful. I don't get that feeling of really taking a picture when I'm looking at a screen.

sui 3/01/2013 9:41 PM  

beautiful, holly -- you and this piece/sentiment, alike.

i think a lot about how much i loved photography (huh, this applies to writing/blogging, too!-- go figure) before i started doing it to sustain my living..... and it's taken three years for me to start regaining my lens-legs again..... for me, what's more common is that i see what i love, sometimes in a special light, and crave to capture it..... i notice that when i don't have a lot of love in my life, i stop shooting. :/

it's also been difficult with my brain muddlings to really see beauty, but my eyes are starting to open again.....

Jenica 3/02/2013 8:47 AM  

This is interesting to me...I'm certainly not much of a photographer. I think I'd be afraid that, distracted by the process, I'd forget to appreciate the transient nuances of the moment. But maybe that wouldn't be the case!

Holly 3/05/2013 1:06 PM  

heather - It's very different, isn't it? One of my favorite feelings in the world: framing a photo in my mind, then looking through the viewfinder and finding it exactly as I imagined.

sui - "something i love in a special light" -- mm, that's good. i wish you much to love and find beautiful, darlin'.

Jenica - Definitely a good concern to have. I think the trick is training yourself to make that appreciation of the transient nuances part of the process, possibly even a more central part than the actual capture or need to capture.

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