Published: travel

on taking photos.


Whilst taking pictures of a small town, a friend remarked "it's like you're a tourist",
"you're always taking pictures like a tourist."

To me, they're almost like a photojournal, one I feel rather open about sharing with others. I don't know when this habit started. Certainly it was before I ever had any inclination to share them. I believe it started before my Mother took up photography for a hobby as well. I don't fancy myself a particularly good photographer either. The number of photos I've taken that I've truly liked is rather limited. I don't take selfies either.

Even so, I continue to take them. The odd thing is that even without them I have a very good memory. I can recall the exact layout of all my school to this day when I search my mind for them, I can see the classrooms in detail, I can walk through my grandmom's old house. I feel that the directness of a photograph is somehow pleasant, a very physical reminder of something you felt the need to capture. I tend towards wider shots of areas, streets, buildings, and so on. They somehow feel like a standard sort of photograph to me, the sort you'd take by default if tasked with going somewhere new and snapping shots on a point and shoot. It's an urge that I can't help, if something in the light lines up right while I am walking alone with my own thoughts, I snap a picture.

A wandering eye of sorts. Perhaps the photos are to confirm to myself I was there? To try and capture some sort of magic moment of that fleeting present for myself? I go, and I'm the operator of the camera. Sometimes I don't feel as though I appreciate what is in front of me until I look at the photos later on. The odder thing still is how flat and lifeless they feel by comparison. Stranger yet is when they become background noise, a phone wallpaper or the like. Seeing them constantly, but unthinkingly. This moment, one I was fully immersed in at one point, has become a bit of static. It's fascinating how distant you can feel to photos, how they feel like a falsehood somehow. Your own photography and others all blended together into a facsimile of memory.

Yet still, in special moments when your heart is calm and you find yourself in the right mind and they suddenly whisk you off, teleporting you to the strange land of time gone by. Walking quietly in the groves of memory can be a nice thing. It's not good to live in the past, but to visit it once in a while is important.

a beach sunset