I am not only someone who appreciates fine photography but because of my job sometimes I am the photographer. I started to become interested in photography in college and it was one of the classes I looked forward to. Unfortunately, I missed the opportunity to delve into manual photography. I am a product of my environment and I am a digital child.
I think our society has embraced digital photography but has not quite risen to the opportunity to explore its true potential. As technology continues to progress, we have to adapt to the new digital landscape of photography. With the increasing popularity of Instagram and the emphasis platforms such as Facebook have placed on images, social media is changing the face of how we record and communicate our lives. We have reached a paradigm shift in this effect. This moment has changed how we record our day-to-day lives.
In the past we have used photography to record a moment in time, document history, to save that moment forever as a tangible object to pass down the line to the next generation. Now these documents exist on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Flckr and Tumblr. They exist only as pixels on a screen. Have we lost the art and meaning behind those images of the past?
The process has changed, we no longer have to shoot a select number of photos, wait to have them developed then place them in an album for moments of nostalgia. I had a printmaking professor who explained the reason why he loved printmaking was the processes. Now our process is simplified, we plug-in and then upload.
What does this mean for us? Is this shift a blessing or curse? On one hand you have technological advancements that allow us to carry around thousands of photos with us anywhere. At the touch and flick of your finger you can view thousands of photos. That certainly beats carrying around a clunky album. Is a printed picture any more or less sentimental in value than those images on our Facebook pages? Has photography been lost as an art form with the over simplified process? We post pictures of our outfits, meals, and playlists. We even post the occasional duck face.
There’s just something incredibly special and meaningful about a printed photo album. Someone put time and love into making it. When you look through it, you feel like you are viewing history. I cannot say whether this digital frontier is for the best, but I’m looking forward to what digital photography holds for communicating our lives in the future.