Saturday, October 15, 2005

More on photography

I went to Washington D.C. for half a day, a few years ago, I remember being almost more concerned with taking pictures, then with actually enjoying and looking at all the architecture, museums and works of art. That is weird. It's like I don't want to forget it so bad that I don't actually experience it to it's fullest. Half the time I saw the world through the lens of a cheap digital camera.

Even now, when I encounter something beautiful, often my first emotion is merely disappointment at not having a camera. How foolish, I wish I would just enjoy the beauty around me. Sure images are great, but they're no replacement for the real thing.

I read an interesting article by one Andy Crouch that touches subject:

"One of the most reliable instincts of modern people, at times of surpassing transcendence—witnessing the first kiss at a wedding, watching our children’s first steps, encountering a family of cheetahs gnawing on a freshly killed gazelle—is to grab a camera. At other places and times people might have written a poem, sung a song, or carved a totem pole. But we, captive to the notion that the only lasting reality is virtual, illuminate our transcendent moments with flashbulbs. "

"Those of us with a professional interest in words tend to bemoan the rise of the image. Yet I’m more hopeful about visual culture than I am about, say, current musical culture, which the iPod is increasingly turning into a solitary experience of customized consumption. For the most part, visual technologies are restoring human beings to our God-given role as communal culture creators."

He notes the renewed interest and emphasis on beuaty in online photo-sharing websites like Flickr and speculates: "...if Plato was right when he described the three transcendent realities as truth, goodness, and beauty, then people who care about truth and goodness must eventually care about beauty as well. And people who value beauty might eventually look for truth."

-Read the whole post here: Visualcy


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