That is a big question, “Why is photography important?” We talked about it previously in a way when we discussed how we are known by what we leave behind, and that’s a big piece of it. Photography captures the moments now so that they are accessible in the future. It documents things as they are, free from the editorialization of memory, or the deterioration of time. Photography is important for plenty of reasons.
Why is Photography Important? It’s Important Because…
It Places You In the Moment
For those in front of the camera, this is literal, photography captures you as you are in this exact moment in your environment. For those behind the lens, the power of photography changes the way we see the world, what we notice and keys us into the moment we look for the perfect shot. We see light, shadows, frames, colors. We note expressions, gestures, feelings, the small human moments that life is made of.
It Documents Your Life
In a purely practical sense, photography document your life! Capturing the moment of your children’s first day of school, birthdays, and those other big life moments. With every passing year, the photos taken serve as a sort of living record to your family’s life and history.
It Creates Firsthand Accounts
Looking even bigger than personal lives, photography is an important historical tool. When it comes to the documenting of history, there are things called “secondhand accounts,” where people know of an event write on a subject, and then there are firsthand accounts – information, stories, tales, from those who experienced the events. Photography, film, these create first-hand accounts of history!
It Connects People Across Space and Time
In a truly sci-fi twist, photography connects folks across space and time! Think about the photos you’ve seen from a hundred years ago or documenting the second world war. Looking at these you see men and women living in their moment, in their place, and just think, in another century your descendants or strangers entirely will be able to look at photos of you in your moment and be connected to your life and experience, if only in that moment.
Photography doesn’t just connect us to our ancestors or our descendants to us. It also helps diffuse information widely through imagery, spreading messages far and wide. It’s why we share school photos with family back home in another state, in one image it transmits the growth and appearance of a loved niece, nephew, grandson, granddaughter, or what have you.
It Brings Joy
Following up on that last point about sharing photos with family members, photography brings joy. Whether it’s in taking the photos (as joyful as it is for us) or in capturing the joy of the moment. If there’s one thing we all could use more of these days it’s joy. Photos of those precious moments, those good times, can bring a powerful dash of joy in the middle of a stressful day. Looking at memories of the good times captured on film can help ease the burden of bad times.
It is An Art
Photography is an art form. It allows us to express ourselves, taking photos of anything from a beautiful landscape, a family home, the lines of weathering on our grandmother’s faces. What the photos capture, what they mean, it’s all a part of the medium of photography as an art. Creating something is perhaps one of the purest pursuits of humanity. That drive for creation is important.
Why is photography important? For us, it’s because we love what we do. Go back to the very first entry here on the blog and you’ll see us talking about just that and in the 14 years since nothing has changed. For us at Frank Frost Photography, photography is important because it’s our passion and yes our livelihood. And we wouldn’t have it any other way!