Like most people in the UK I spent Saturday at the beach, in fact, we went for the whole weekend. We had great fun, spending all day in the sand and the sea, and it improved my mental health. There is something very uplifting and calming about feeling the sand and smelling the sea air.
What was surprising was the number of people I observed spending more time taking photos than they did enjoying the situation. This isn’t a millennial thing either; it was a whole range of people from teenagers right the way through to those in their twilight years. All were posing in weird positions or waiting for certain things to happen to take photos and share them.
I don’t think these were for mementoes, the occasional selfie might have been, but most of those shots gave the impression they weren’t for themselves at all – they were for everyone else. Instead of enjoying the experience, a large percentage of people were looking at it through the lens of their camera, and when not doing that they were thinking about what pictures to take. On several occasions, the telltale “wait let me take a picture” can be heard while every little detail is caught on film.
This isn’t about taking photos, I take loads of them, in fact one of my favourite things to do is just wander around a park with my camera and look for photos to take. It’s about experiencing things fully and not taking yourself out of the moment. Record little clips of sporting events and concerts, but don’t watch the whole things through your camera screen. How on earth Glastonbury attendees managed to rack up 100GB of traffic is completely beyond me.
Memories live in your head, and last a whole long longer than your cloud storage solution to your bulging photo album.