Technology makes every day Independence Day

When you think of Independence Day, it's unlikely that technology comes to mind, but I'd like to take this opportunity to remind everyone (including myself) about the technological freedom that we all enjoy today, specifically as it relates to photography.

We're all enjoying a Golden Age of sorts, where you can take a professional-quality picture with an inexpensive camera, see the results instantly and share the results with people all over the world within minutes of creating it. It was only a few years ago when we had no choice but to share our photos in person or through the mail. This was a huge challenge for newly married couples who wanted to share their wedding photos with all of their family and friends, but today I upload all of my digital photos to a website that will allow anyone to view them and order prints.

Remember taking your film to the photo lab and getting back prints where everyone looked purple or blue? How about keeping track of all those negatives? Now I upload my photos to a hard drive so big, it'll take me thousands of pictures to fill up (and you better believe I will!).

Technology is constantly making our lives easier, and when our lives get easier, we're more inclined to be creative. Photography is an ideal tool because it not only expresses creativity, it documents our life.

Now that technology has given us the freedom to express our unique personalities and document our lives in an unbelievably convenient and inexpensive fashion, there's little reason not to celebrate that freedom, but if you look at most family's photo albums, you're likely to see a pattern of diminishing effort: lots of baby pictures, then a gradual petering off to birthday parties, vacations, weddings, graduations and occasional parties. If I'm not capturing the life that happens in between those major events, I feel like I'm squandering my opportunity to memorialize the little and big events that make up my life and the life of my family. I've never met a person who had regrets about all the pictures they'd taken, but many people over the years have told me that they wish they'd taken more photos. You get a whole new perspective when you see your picture-taking as an expression of freedom.

1 comment:

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