Taking photos is something I do almost every day. Most times I’m shooting with my iPhone, capturing silly things I’m doing, or something interesting I come across in my day.
But when I’m playing tourist, I’m focused on trying to capture the essence of the place I’m visiting, to enjoy the creative boost of being in a new place. I know it’s been said by some that constantly taking pictures diminishes the enjoyment of being “in the moment.” And while that may sometimes be true, I find that my focus on capturing images helps me to slow down and really see what’s around me.
I become more aware of little things that I might not notice when I’m in familiar surroundings. Things I might otherwise walk past, get a second look.
When visiting a well-known city–like Seattle–I’m not attempting to take postcard-worthy photos. Plenty of pros have done a fine job of that! I still enjoy visiting those spots, though, and capturing my own version of these iconic places.
The most important reason I want these images is that they help me remember. They spark memories in a way that’s unlike any other. I recall who I was with, the delicious food we shared, conversations we had.
The truth is, I will never have those moments in time again. Places, people, circumstances will change. I will never replicate those exact moments, but I can enjoy looking back on them. And though I share some images here and there, they are mostly for me.
Sometime in the future, these photos will make me smile…and that’s quite enough reason to continue my practice!