Had an interesting conversation with a friend the other day. About how our events and parties are becoming so much about photos; dressing for them, decorating for them, posing for them; almost like the photos are the biggest part of the occasion. It has become an interesting phenomenon. Documenting our gatherings and celebrations has taken such a front role at our events now that at some events it can feel like that is what it’s all about. As hosts we can forget the importance of looking after our guests, making sure they’re having a nice time and as guests our focus mainly becomes getting our photos taken and looking perfect in them instead of enjoying our friends, making good conversations, and truly enjoying the moments we are so focused on capturing.
Being a photographer and generally a lover of memory-making, I love the joy and happiness that photography and memories captured bring to our life. I never want to stop capturing our days, relationships and celebrations, but yes if we’re not present in the moments we are trying to capture, it negates the whole point, doesn’t it? As in most cases, balance is probably the key here too.
As a photographer, I always prefer taking candid shots but feel obligated to ask people to pose most times. The conversation with my friend made me want to be even more discrete at events, making sure I don’t’ interrupt conversations and move people around just to get that perfect shot that is in my head.
Personally, I just realized that in the past year or so, I have been taking my camera with me to gatherings less and less. Partly it’s because I know one of my awesome friends will bring hers ;), but also because even when I do take it it just keeps sitting in my bag many times as I have a really hard time balancing both, taking photos and enjoying the company! In fact, taking photos on my cellphone feels better on such occasions as it feels more spontaneous and less intrusive. And most times the little snip bits of memories from our cellphone photos or our instagram feeds; the food, the fun, the people; is more than enough! Maybe our photo-hating husbands (are all husbands like that?) have a point here!!
What do you think? Have you noticed this too? Does it bother you much or not so much? Would love to hear your thoughts.