Did you know that May is National Photography Month? Since the early 1800’s people have been trying to capture the world on film. From the iconic photos of Louis Daguerre, Lewis Carroll, and Ansel Adams and others we were introduced to what the rest of the world looked like. Photography has evolved from a time-consuming process, to the daguerreotype, to the fun Polaroid to today’s digital cameras and photographs that we can edit.
I’m not a photo pro by any means but I love taking pictures of the little things in life that surprise me or make me happy, like nature and architecture. Photography for many people is a way of remembering things. I often take photos of things I need to remember like recipes from a recipe book before going food shopping, a topic I want to research, or a paper with dates posted at a public building.
For the most part though photography is used to forever remember things that happened and people who lived. I love looking at old photos and watching shows on TV about historic buildings because it makes history real to me. Even though today things can be doctored and edited, I still find photography to be an invaluable gift to the world.
Photography is also a way of keeping the past around and reminding us of what we want to do different in the future or the big victories in our lives. There are several photos of the American flag you may be familiar with, the 1945 photo of US troops raising the flag at Iwo Jima during WW2, and the photo of the 3 firefighters in NYC after 9/11/01 at Ground Zero have become iconic for many people, not just those who were personally impacted by the events of that day (unlike your photo of your family picnic last summer). But those personal photos are important too, because they keep our ancestors alive after they have passed on.
What are you most thankful for about photography?