I have always taken first day of school photos of my kids but it is usually in a hurry as the new routine has thrown all of us off kilter. That being said, I look at the hundred of photos that appear on my Facebook feed of other first day of school photos and wonder what’s the purpose? Is it to make the kids feel special? Is it to document that they went on the first day? Is it to share with friends and loved ones? Are we ever going to print those out and actually save them as a keepsake? Do we just like taking photos?
There are over 300 million photos loaded to Facebook everyday. There are a billion photos of Instagram. It is estimated that we have taken well over 3.8 trillion photos to date. I would imagine that most of those have and will not see the light of day. The person pressing the button even thinks they are rubbish. However, others see pass being our of focus, have the date electronically imposed on the picture, the squinting eyes, the unevenness of the lighting, …, they just see their loved one. I admit that I have devalued the services of others and have tried to cook a five course meal (maybe three) because I have a oven and stove but I realize that certain things take talent, education and experience to be done right (or at least better than I can).
This year I decided to be deliberate in my first day of school photos and even put out an invitation to friends that they could come by and take advantage of my passion, knowledge and experience. No strings attached.
I was surprised how few came over but with so many photos being taken, most people do not value a quality picture versus a documentary snapshot. Photography has become a commodity for most.
For those that did come over, they appreciate the photos, have asked for prints, have indicted they will not be ordering school photos and that the photographs will be displayed in their home in some manner. I guess that is one small step…