Photography can be a fun hobby. Photography can give you sweet, smiley pictures to hang on your living room wall. It can help you show off your new makeup look or today's outfit on your social media for your friends and family to see and admire. These are all great things! However, there is even more to taking photos that can create an even more lasting and significant impact.
Here are just some of the examples of why photography is one of the most important tools we can utilize.
1. Historical Significance
It's easy to use words to describe the people of the past. The way they lived, the games they played, their traditions, hair and clothing styles... But seeing them for yourself really establishes and helps prove that it's all more than just hearsay. It helps us realize that these were real people experiencing real events. It helps us feel that our history was their reality.
Many historical events were captured in photographs, and they hold a mood, an emotion, a truth that otherwise might be erased with time. These iconic images help us shape our history. With them, we can form opinions to make better decisions in the future.
2. They Tell A Story
Photos can tell a story of someone's life, or even just a moment in it. They can establish a timeline of the past, and bring back what was felt in those moments.
For example: When someone looks back at photos of their wedding day, they can see the transformation from early morning nerves, to anxiously excited to see their spouse all done up. From the feeling of the butterflies and tears welling up as you made eye contact with your loved one at the altar, to that first kiss as a married couple. All you could think at that moment is "be sure grandma doesn't see too much tongue..." Then the feeling of being 4 glasses of champagne in and dancing with your best friends and family to the YMCA. Photos help you to relive this day and these moments every time.
You can also see the story of your children growing. Watch their personalities grow and change. See their lost teeth and remember when they used to need their favorite stuffy to fall asleep. See their braces stage, their first school dance, all of the things that we don't realize we will miss until they're grown.
3. Sometimes All You Have Is Memories
Most of us, unfortunately, can say that we have had to go through the pain of losing someone special in our lives. I lost my dad at six, and spent a lot of time, in my youth, digging through my mom's giant box of pictures looking to see my dad's smile. I wanted to remember how he used to play with us. I wanted to dig up some memories that I was too young to keep a good hold on by myself.
We would all like to believe that those we love will be around forever, but life tells us differently. Even the most simple photos can bring back the strongest memories. They can bring you back to a time in your life and make you feel, even for a moment, that that person is still with you. They can remind you how much love was shared between you.
Photos are like magic, in that they stop time for a moment and that moment will now never be lost. You can hold that moment with that person in your hands forever.
4. They Make You Feel Things
Not all, but many of us, rely heavily on the visual parts of life.
It's been shown that certain colors can invoke specific emotions in individuals. If you look on Instagram or Pinterest, you will find thousands of instances of people using and searching the word "aesthetic". There is a reason that we are all
obsessed with interior design, colors, decor...
Sometimes it can be nice, even therapeutic, to look at a photo that makes you feel a certain way.
One of the biggest reasons that photography is important is because it allows you to express yourself. It’s a great creative outlet where you can express your own personal style.
Sometimes, in life, we fall into the societal norms of keeping our clothing and style in a relatively "normal" and more traditional boundary. But, with photography, the more extreme the better! You can put a literal beehive on your head and paint flowers on your face if that's what makes you feel beautiful... And it will be beautiful!
If you are looking for a way to reach out about your mental health and express how you're feeling, but can't find the words, you can use the art of photography to give a visual representation and allow others to see what otherwise would be trapped only in your head.
The most awesome thing is that you can do whatever you want. Regardless of the “rules” and techniques, photography has no boundaries. You can express yourself without any restrictions.
6. Remembering The Beauty Of The World
No two people see things exactly the same. Some love roses and find them absolutely beautiful, and others find them tacky and overbearing. Some people see dust dancing in the sunlight through their bedroom window and think "ew, I need to clean." and others think "Oh wow, that's beautiful." (Yes, that's me, I know it's weird.)
Sometimes, you can use photography to allow others to see the world in the same way as you. You can use lighting, framing, and surroundings to invoke specific emotions in others. Sometimes, we walk past something so often, or we see something so frequently, that we forget to really look at it.
Photography prompts you to stop and really look at these things again. To see them as if they were new. It can take us off of autopilot and force us to see the details and the uniqueness of even the most basic things around us.
7. Inspiring Travel
Photography encourages you to explore the world around you. It gives you another reason to get out and see more of the world, to find new and beautiful places. Diversifying your location can help you to experiment with different lighting, different backgrounds, different colors, and ranges of view. A bonus is that you will also find, and fall in love with, new places to visit with your family and friends.
Doing this can help you stay present. Stay connected with the world and the people around you. It helps you find inspiration to experience locations and moments from different perspectives. The more of the world you experience, the more open your mind can become. You will find that, with your travels, you are also constantly learning new things, and using your lens to share these benefits with others.
We have all heard that the polar ice caps are melting. We all have heard that there is a war happening in Syria right now. We all have heard that Tonga is dealing with horrible damage from the recent tsunamis. We can all feel empathy for these situations, but being so far removed from it all, we don't always let ourselves comprehend the weight of these situations. But, when you see the photos, the damage with your own eyes, the people who are affected, and the emotions on their faces, it really hits you. It brings you closer to the environment and makes it all feel more real.
We need to capture these things and share them with the world. In doing so we can understand that there are real people in the world who need help, who need kindness, who need change. These kinds of photos bring humanity together and help raise voices of those who need it the most, or who can't speak for themselves. They show us what needs to be fixed and why. They make us think.
9. It Can Enhance Business
A large part of creating and marketing a business is building your brand. Use visuals to show your potential clients what your brand stands for, and give them a sense of who they are supporting.
La Esmeralda in Jackson, CA
We tend to trust more when we can make a connection with them, which is easier to do when you can put a face to the company. A good way to do this is to make it easy for them to go to your website and see a clean, professional headshot of you.
10. No Language Barriers
There are roughly 6,500 languages spoken in the world today. Most places speak at least two languages. It's not hard to run into language barriers in your life, especially if you are an avid traveler, or live in an area with a diverse population or somewhere with a fair amount of tourism. It can be frustrating to have such a significant communication struggle with so many of your fellow humans.
Photography is a great way to connect with people, on an emotional level, without the need for words. You can share an experience, a moment, a message with another person, without having to explain. It's an artistic expression that can be shared and interpreted throughout different cultures, religions, and classes. It's a means for connection and understanding between vastly different worlds.
If this article convinced you as to why photography is important, click here to contact us and schedule a photo session today! Our photographers can do portraits, weddings, events, products, food, and real estate.