Yesterday, I got two rolls of film developed, and was very pleased with the results. I adore my camera, and I adore taking pictures even if some of them don’t turn out. But there were several good ones in this bunch – the kind that make me take in a breath because they look just like I imagined them. The sun glinting off the water. The easter lily in Grandma Lou’s yard. A heron in a marsh.
I am grateful for the technology of digital cameras. I am the kind of person who can take 25 pictures of the very same sea gull. Digital cameras are good for me because I waste less film. But I’m addicted to the click of my SLR’s shutter. And maybe because I know I shouldn’t waste film, I spend more time setting up my shot, waiting for the right moment, the right angle, the right picture.
I’ve been thinking more about the importance of pictures lately. I even bought (though I probably didn’t need it and got ripped off) a special pen you can use to write on the backs of photos.
I was thinking about people looking at my photographs after I’m gone. And really, I’m not being morbid. Instead, I think it’s a nice thought. Some great-great granchild I’ll never meet will pull a dusty box out of the attic and start flipping through my photo books. When she asks, “Who was this? Where was this taken?” I won’t be there to answer. But they’re important questions because pictures tell stories. I don’t plan to write the story of each picture on the back of the photograph, but if I can simply add a name, place, and date, my great-great granchild can fill in the rest with her imagination.