Memory and pictures “This is not my Memory”

I feel fortunate that my father took a lot of pictures during my childhood.  They form a certain kind of memory cue card that allows me to recall the events surrounding the images, even the feelings associated with them.  I think that that may be a part of what makes them special, that attachment to specific events and times.  In contrast today we seem to be taking so many pictures of so many events that maybe each individual image looses some of it’s ability to be a mnemonic and becomes just visual noise.  How long will an image be relevant if it is superficial to us now?  My dad shot Kodachrome slides, at the rate of about 3 to 4 36 exposure rolls per year.  This is a number and an amount of visual information that is easily retained. How can we deal though with thousands and even tens of thousand of images each year?  Does it really provide us with more information or is it diminishing returns?  There was a certain different social aspect to watching slides then as well.  While we share many images online with our friends, families and strangers it tends to be a solitary experience lacking the immediacy of a group of people all in the same place at the same time pointing at the same thing.  This was the way that those images my father took were re-enforced within my memory.

There is a degree of satisfaction though, derived from having others acknowledge your work online.  I don’t believe I could have finished this piece without the online community of  Mytubo photographers and their positive support.   I’ve posted most of these there, all having been taken and processed on my Android phone.  In case you find yourself there I’m @WallaceRoss, but the Internet generates fleeting things so who knows for how long.

These 3000+ cell phone images captured over the last 8 months do not replace my memory of that period of time and while I can recall where most if not all of them were taken for how long will that be true.  It makes me wonder if perhaps I shouldn’t select 100 to 150 images a year that have meaning to me and have them printed out, after all that is an amount I can handle.

This Print is 60″ x 40″ but a lower resolution version can be zoomed into online here  Cell Zoom


7 Responses to “Memory and pictures “This is not my Memory””

Leave a Reply