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Change in Photography

Capturing of images has undergone unimaginable change through the past few years, and perhaps some time near in the future it may be possible to capture pictures the way Harry Potter characters did - as a short moving clip.
From paintings to black and white was a huge step, but nothing IMHO changed photography as much as digital photography did.
It made photographs expendable.
There is a seriousness to reel photography. The reels are unchangeable important bits. They are a limited resource. Hence, the photographer paid more importance to people, than to abstract art. Unless they were professionals. Paintings were (and still are) bought by people who can afford them. And when the choice was between a landscape and one of your own face, people preferred the latter (but of course).
The same rule carried on for photography. Though this time it was more accessible. People still had full frontal photographs in front of places, thereby proving they had been there. So there would be groups of people in front of, or around the building/ landmark they want to photograph. There should, afterall be no wastage of the roll. If photographs are supposed to document memory, personalise them by being present in the frame, and not just behind it. Sceneries were meant for postcards and posters - professionals would do it best.
The seriousness seen towards photography has still not diminished. The consciousness brought about by being in front of a camera has reduced, but is a definite reduction to our parent generation where being in front of lens meant a check on clothing, hair, smile plastered on (if female, otherwise a serious face if adult male) and a stare right into the camera lenses. The change can be seen in movies as well.

However, then came digital photography. With cameras in every hand, on every moment and every phone, everyone has become an amateur photographer. People have let their imaginations go wild and abstract photography is no longer the domain of professional/ serious artists. It is now open to whoever has the eye for it. A flickr account, a kodak account, a picassa web album - everyone seems to play around with photographs in every imaginable method - except physical glossy 6X3inch copies.

Photographs of people in groups too, is no longer about facing the camera. In most cases candid shots are in, with the ones photographed playing with the moment. No longer the straight faces and artificial sense to photos. No longer does a photo mean people looking in front, holding hands or shoulders. Now it means being natural, laughing, making ridiculous poses - and trying to remember the moment rather than the occasion.

Photography has indeed come a long way. A snap one does not like can be deleted, if photo shopping is out of the question. A private photograph need have no physical presence - it can be hidden away anywhere ethereally. And most of all, the space for photography is limitless. Data cards can be filled and emptied onto another device and refilled - almost endlessly. Taking a few hundred photographs on an outing is not uncommon. And many of them are un-thought of, candid moments.

Photography has changed a lot. Taking a lot of time, patience and effort away from it, making it accessible and common. It has become the equivalent of blogging to writing books - easier, shorter, not necessarily perfect, but still beautiful.

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
29th Jan, 2009 13:31 (UTC)
to comment :D. within minutes no less.
Totally agree, time was when one had to wait for national geographic and other magazines to see beautiful snaps, taken with professional cameras. Now armed with quite cheap hardware, we can take semi great snaps in a jiffy!. Though serious photography is still an art form, photoshop renders it pretty redundant in many cases.
User is king!..
btw.. is it this song you are stuck with ? really profound lyrics!.
Behka mein bahka,behki tu behki? :D
29th Jan, 2009 13:38 (UTC)
Re: first!
^^ yup!
and yes, thats the song :/
29th Jan, 2009 13:57 (UTC)
I had spoken of this earlier, though in a more general sense of how going digital lets everyone create whatever they want, not just photos.

Now in fact, we're faced with a surfeit of content. Between us we must have had over 300 pics during the trip- understandably not all of them would be photogenic, but viewing them together in chronological order is like a slideshow of memories :)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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