July 31, 2010

To photograph, or not to photograph

The hubs and I like to chat about this subject every now and then:

Can you photograph moments while still experiencing them?

For ME, it has been a no. I pretty much always feel like I'm outside looking in if I have a camera in hand. It has been impossible for me to photograph some of our daily life because I'm experiencing it as it happens. I'm in the moment when L likes to whisper in my ear because I'm actually sitting with her listening to her whisper in my ear.

Not sure exactly what I'm talking about? Have a lookie at these photos. The hubs got really irritated (can't blame him) with me after bossing him around too much, telling him how to hold the s'more. So I moved on to my brother (who appears in the photos). He wasn't mad at me. You better believe it would have been a nice little evening at my sister's if I never pulled out the camera at all and just enjoyed the fire and sweets and peeps. But you could also argue it may have been a moment forgotten without the photos.

Another ongoing, but related conversation...

Does everything and every moment have to be photographed? I also say, "No" to this one. Photographers are people too. Sometimes you have to just live.

Any thoughts on the subject?

P.S. I feel a hiatus coming on.


  1. True, true, true.... to all of it. I think Id rather have the memories in a photo and risk a little aggravation. But I get exactly what you are both saying.

  2. For me it's a balancing act. I love, love, love pictures, and I love to digital scrapbook and then look at the albums over and over again. I don't photograph every event, but when I do I try to take a couple of good shots, and then put the camera away. I'm hardly ever in any pictures, though.

  3. hmmm. food for thought, for sure. I think you CAN experience while shooting, but it is different kind of experience than the HERE. NOW. experience of most interactions with children.... and sometimes husbands. Sometimes I find it nice to be able to manipulate the TYPE of experience I am having during some event or day, etc.

    on the other question-- not EVERYTHING needs to be photographed. I think most people DO because digital is so easy, blah blah. but us filmies-- we can't possibly photograph everything because in each experience there are only a few good photographs to be captured anyway.

    p.s. yourself-- no hiatus-ing, missy! ;)

  4. oh wow. this definitely opens a can of worms. My husband and I talk about this all the time and in fact, I just read your post to him. I can relate!, he said.

    I agree with both your answers that NO, we can't really enjoy the moment if we have the camera in front of us. But at the same time, I'm enjoying the moment from my creative side; trying to capture that moment in art.
    And yes, we may not remember the fun things we were doing if the moments weren't documented.
    So....it's a revolving circular conversation.

  5. LOL. Alisha, you are funny.

    Couldn't agree more on the manipulating the type of experience. I like it too.

  6. It depends on the situation. Like when we were having s'mores & Spence was managing the whole "experience". I thoroughly enjoyed it because my role in the experience was the observer. But other times this last year when it was only me & the kids, *sigh* it's a hard balance. Don't know if there's a good answer to the question.

  7. ooh dana, i'm enjoying the moment from my creative side... i like that... because i think sometimes we REALLY NEED to have our creative side piqued and that doesn't happen unless we are consciously thinking creatively, like you do when you are being creative.