10 February 2014

What to Capture?

The other day, as I was walking from the metro station to go to my office, I bumped into a couple of tourists. One of them was holding a small video camera, mounted on an extended arm mounter. This person was taking a video. So I looked around and saw what he was taking a video of. And I couldn't help but notice that he was simply taking a video of the street which we were crossing. It was Leipziger Strasse; it's right smack in the middle of the city, close to some tourist attractions, but really, aside from the fact that it was a large avenue, it was nothing special. So I thought, is that really that interesting for a tourist, that it is worth capturing on video?

I never took videos during my trips. I only have my camera, and is always content with whatever I capture using it. In fact, sometimes I even question this: yes, I take a lot of photos. But after taking them, after uploading them to Facebook, after using those to write my blog articles, I burn them on a CD and save it on an external hard drive. And then what? Have I looked at those photos from years ago? I don't remember the last time I looked at my photos I took in Ecuador. In fact, the only time I opened up my external hard drive and dug those photos recently was when I was hanging out with my boyfriend and he wanted to see them. Aside from that, I never really browsed my photos.

So sometimes I wonder, is it still worth taking photos?

Maybe, the purpose of capturing photos in a trip is not as much as providing an avenue to preserve memories created during that trip, but rather, taking pictures is simply part of the script that one implicitly follows while on a trip. You're taking a vacation, so you are expected to take photos. Otherwise, it won't feel like a vacation. Otherwise, there aren't photos you can upload on Facebook and show to the world, and if you cannot show something, there won't be proof of your vacation. There won't be an external validation for your trip. Maybe we take photos just so that we can upload them and that people can Like them on Facebook.

I don't know. What I do know, however, is that taking photos has some sort of therapeutic value for me. As I said earlier, I have this feeling that taking a vacation without taking a photo is a little cognitively dissonant.

Anyway, this blog entry isn't arguing for something. Rather, I am just ranting, talking out loud. I'll probably still take photos during my next vacation.

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