Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Picture Perfect

At times, I wonder what pictures meant in the past?

This question popped in my mind when I was seeing a slide show of my digital pictures. I nearly spent a whole day looking good but just got few "good looking pics".

I wondered How quick the photo taking process has become.. click it .. dont like it.. delete it.. click another.. dont like.. delete it.. after few more bad clicks.. battery down..  :(

I compared my digital pictures with the hand held photo albums where one has to turn the pages one-by-one stopping few seconds or more (i stare the picture for a minute) and seeing the "perfect" toothless smile when you were really "a babe" and a freckle less, frown less, wrinkle less picture of when you were 11 and a glowing skin (with no visible zits and acne) when you were  13-14 and some out of focus pictures as cameras were just cameras then and not automatic focus, anti shake and exposure fixing machines.

When I was 10 and my sister 14-ish, we used to spend our monthly allowance on buying camera reels. Its about the year 1997 and life was REELY simple and we started feeling being " new grown ups" as we bought our personal camera. We used to dress up and then one after another we used to click photos in various poses. Wow.  The reel had space for 32 photos so we used to make it sure that we don't end the film by clicking pictures in dark, or in over exposure and the ULTIMATE AIM WAS TO CAPTURE OUR GOOD LOOKS in different attires :) we were and are still a pair of funny sisters who never threw tantrums! So we would spend a lot of time without creating much fuss in getting the best out of each other in those pictures.

When we finished our 32 picture slab, we used to give the film for getting it developed at the photo developing shops and eagerly waited for the next evening when we will get our pictures in hand!

After getting the pictures in our hand, we used to hurriedly see the pictures, flipping them really fast in order to check if any picture was wasted by us? Every time 2 or 3 pics were shaken or hazy so we would say.. Oh I really look good even in the shaky/hazy/blurred/out-of-focus picture! At home we would orderly arrange the pictures in the album and show it to our friends as a pass time :)

This exercise was repeated even when the cousins used to come home for vacations, we would go for clicking the pictures outdoors and posting them theirs at their addresses when they were gone.

Now I have seen that people have the tendency of clicking meaningless pictures, there are people who want to take public opinion about their nail polish color whether it suits them or not? I know a girl who clicked a picture of her manicured hand that had nail art over it and to me that looked really a wastage of battery, if not film!

Pictures were taken then to keep the joys and progress of the family in tact on the paper. To keep the smiles on and not to showcase five colored fingers! We never took public opinions on how we looked as we were just natural and the wait for the photos to come in hand.. made every photo precious. .. but today I feel I should be appreciated in my photos.. for what.. for doing the most difficult task... choosing which photos to show where I look okay.  Leave aside Perfection.. Now it can never be achieved.

To achieve that perfection in photos is not possible now.. not atleast with the DigiCam in hand for me.



  1. you just brought me back to the REELy wonderful days of analog cameras and films. i am missing those days. i still make sure though to print photos of great memories made. my girl loves looking at them in an album. :)

  2. I bought my first Analog camera just when I was affordable, but timing is not right, a digital one came in right after this.

    But now I enjoyed a lot using a DSLR, everything comes so easy, and it is cheaper to keep pictures in PC.

  3. Things certainly have changed!

  4. glad to see you here again Naqvee, I always enjoy reading your thoughts.

    And thank you for bringing me back to those days, where I patiently and eagerly await how will the pictures look. The one day wait later became one hour wait ( there were fast processing), and always excited to make photo albums of those pictures. Time flies!

    I love the digital cam now because it makes it cheaper for me to enjoy freezing the joys of simple life around, the joys of seeing a bird happily flying or looking for food, the joy of nature around us, etc.

    I however still print some of my pictures and frame them, I have a mini-gallery at home :) haha!

    However, I do see your point how others made the bragging so easier now, pictures of their new purchases, some even their receipts, if you have Faebook, you will know what I mean, haha! But maybe, it's good you do not have Facebook so you won't be stressed in seeing these kind of "huh? duh!" pictures.

  5. Hello! Very interesting blog!

  6. Your observations are right on point. It's so true that we are obsessed with obtaining the "perfect" images. Whatever that means. I agree that the natural pictures of the past were less stressful, but I am amazed at what photography can accomplish now. Great post!

  7. You just reminded me of the "camera and film" days ! We are very lucky to have been born on the generation where all these transformations are happening. We experienced what it was like and what it is now and great comparisons on both times. I can ask my kids what a camera film looks like and I am expecting a funny look as they have no idea what a film looks like and what it does.

    I love your story, they are so real and I can relate !

  8. I love the effect you put on your blog! It's awesome!! Anyways, Pictures mean soo much takes us back to the past! To me a picture means more than words, i love looking back and remembring, I also collect portraits. Awesome post!!


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