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Taking Pictures and Reminiscing the Past

Last Updated 6th November 2012

The great thing about photography is that it can mean anything to anyone. Each of us have a reason why we keep taking photos. We can treat it as an art form, a hobby or even a responsibility. If you think about it, photographs are just simple images. But it is something very powerful, enough to build a bridge that will connect us to the past, show us a reflection of the day’s events or maybe act as a simple reminder for us to stop for a while and appreciate the beauty of art.

Taking Photos

What can be so hard about taking photos? You just simply have to get your camera, point to a subject, click, and hope you got something good. Most of us practice that method. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it rarely gets us photos worthy to be called a masterpiece. If it’s your lucky day, it will work. And then some days, it won’t.

Now that we know that pointing and shooting isn’t exactly the best way to get consistently great shots, we try to do what professional photographers and experienced amateurs do. We have to carefully study the subject. Factor in the other aspects like the lighting, the angle and the composition. Once you’ve learned how to follow the rules of basic photography, taking great photos might not be so hard of a task after all.

Taking Photos (The Art of It)

Truly artistic photos have the ability to engage the viewer and evoke powerful emotions. A photo taken by a good photographer can be compared to a painting. It stirs up certain feelings, represents a certain mood and conveys messages. It doesn’t even matter what kind of photo it is. A photographer can focus on portraits, landscapes or wildlife. But the universal goal here is to turn pointing and shooting a camera into something refined. Through that, the photos taken will be as much of a piece of art as a painting or sculpture.

Family Albums

Many of us are not professional photographers. Most of the time, we take photos for family memories. Nothing beats looking through old photographs of momentous family occasions like weddings, births and the fun vacations you’ve had.

But the purpose of family albums isn’t restricted to the present time. They become cherished heirlooms that will link generation to generation. One thing you can keep  in mind when taking family photos is the kind of image you want to pass on to your descendants. What would you want them to know about your family? How would you want them to understand your family?

Pictures as History and News

We’ve seen how photos can be great investments for the future. But even now, we ourselves use them to get a glimpse of the past. Similar to what the future generations would do, we look at photos of the past to get an understanding of their way of life, what it was like and many other details about the distant eras.

News and media utilizes photography as a means to inform people. A picture is worth a thousand words. Pictures have this unique ability to create an impact and produce an effect that just text alone might never be able to achieve. Many people have read about the horrors of World War II, but it is nowhere as effective as the pictures of the real people at Auschwitz that tell us straight up that what happened was real, when the horrors are vividly shown right in front of our faces.

Practical Picture Taking

If you’re not much into art and humanities, photos will still play a role in your life as they have practical purposes, such as documentation to verify certain circumstances. Pictures of personal property might be necessary if a burglary happens or if you need to file an insurance claim. In court, photos of car accidents and crime scenes can be critical evidence. In fact, because of the weight of the matter, accurate pictures of the crime scenes are very important to the police force and it is their responsibility to be able to take them.

Since we’re dealing with practical purposes here, here’s a practical tip: If you intend to use pictures for insurance claims and legal reasons, it is best to use film instead of digital cameras as they are harder to alter. Therefore, they carry more weight in court and in insurance companies.

Looking at Pictures Today

Digital photography has really revolutionized the way we take photos. In contrast to the traditional use of film, digital cameras can save both time and money. Because of that, people feel more free to take pictures with their digital cameras. Now that almost every mobile phone has a camera, we’re able to take photos and share them with the world right away. With the advancing technology, change has come not only in the way we take photos. It also gave us new ways to view them too. In olden times, people view and share photos through prints and albums. Now, we can simply store them on a CD or upload them in our personal websites or in social networking sites. The photo frame also experienced some degree of evolution. Slideshows are very popular means of viewing photos in the digital world. We can also easily attach photos in emails, making sharing much easier and faster among family and friends. Bringing people together has never been this easy.

But even with all those advancements, it’s still a precious thing to be able to look at photos in an old album or a freshly developed roll of film. Plenty of photos bring us back memories and it is effectively displayed in black and white or sepia film, which might not look quite right on a computer screen. Reality is also another important factor. To be able to hold that piece of memory in your hand gives a more personal feel and makes it even more special. It’s safe to say that no matter how the world of photography changes with the constantly evolving technology, it will always be a special moment to be able to hold closely the physical prints and sift through the pages of an album as we recollect the good old days.



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