We are bombarded daily with endless amounts of photographs whether these are from Instagram, Facebook or Snapchat, it appears to be the natural thing to constantly capture every moment of our day. But is this really living? Are we truly experiencing life when attempting to take the perfect picture to edit later before posting it onto one of our many social media accounts?
After setting my dad up with his first ever Instagram account and watching him attempt to post pictures and edit his profile it made me realise how alien the entire concept was to a forty-five year old man. It almost seems like second nature to our generation to document our lives through pictures showing off our latest gym outfit, fancy coffee or exotic holiday. I asked my friend the other day what I should caption a candid picture I wanted to post of us as we were determined to get a ‘cute picture’ together possibly because it was a rare occasion when we weren’t living in the library in gym outfits. But does this take anything away from our night out?
Each year brings about the typical birthday balloons photo, New Years celebrations post and some sort of floating inflatable summer holiday pic. We convince ourselves we will go back and look at all the pictures taken from these experiences but the truth is they’ll most likely sit in our camera rolls forgotten. Some may say rather than focusing on the moment we wrap ourselves in the aesthetic world and worry about what pictures have managed to be successes.
It’s a dangerous game we all seem to have voluntarily became players in. We blindly believe that the more interesting the photos we have mean the more interesting our lives must be. We count the likes and read the comments as though they define the experience itself. But as more and more of us become aware of this is it really as bad as we originally thought? For myself using social media such as Instagram is a way to stay in contact with friends and have a online photograph album of all your favourite memories that you can share with your friends and family. I’m sure there are lots of other reasons for this millennial obsession but from my view I do not see a problem with living in the moment and capturing it at the same time. Wanting to treasure the memories through photographs really isn’t as bad as some may make it seem.
It’s all about balance. Learning that your holidays, special moments and crazy nights out will still happen and remain important to you regardless to whether you get the perfect selfie, the right angle or the correct lighting is crucial. So, with trips to Berlin and Rome looming in the future it makes me question whether I should immerse myself in the experience or snap away? Is the importance of the moment lost to the lens or are we simply moaning about an issue that just isn’t there?