“Sometimes I don’t. If I like a moment, for me, personally, I don’t like to have the distraction of the camera. I just want to stay in it.” – Sean O-Connell in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
With facebook, twitter, instagram, (take your pic) most everything in our day to day life gets documented.
Woke up and still feel sleepy? Tweet that
Decided to make a pound of bacon for breakfast? Instagram it
Want to see that bacon gone in 7 seconds? Show the world on Vine how you devoured it
Ate too much and now you don’t feel well? Throw it up on Facebook
Everything we do seems to have its place in the online world.
That being said, I feel like a large amount of people haven’t stopped to really, and I mean really, enjoy being in a moment.
So much is neglected for the sake of a like or a retweet.
I’m not saying that I don’t partake in any of the above, I definitely do.
Often, however, I put my phone or my camera away and just live in that moment.
Being in the moment can be so much more without the technological aspect of it.
As I’m typing this, a lot of memories are brought back.
Not pictures that I can show, but memories and moments that I’ll always have.
When I’m taking certain pictures it takes time to catch the right light. It takes time to find the right angle. Moments and seconds are missed having to adjust the settings. I do love that aspect, but often when it comes to the images I take, I remember toying with the camera more so than the moment.
Once I know I have the image of what I wanted to show I remember the process to get the image, but mentally pass over the moment itself.
Does any of that make sense?
I guess what I’m trying to say is that photos can be a distraction or they offer an excuse to be lazy with a memory.
The most beautiful moments that I’ve experienced I don’t have images of and probably never will.
Last year when I was at the Tulum Monkey Sanctuary my buddy Alex and I went for a swim in one of the cenotes (natural water filled sinkhole).
A large portion of the cenote was in a cave with light shining through holes and crevices in the rocks. The other part that was exposed was where everybody would jump in, hang out and swim.
As we were exploring the cave portion we found a couple of boulders in the cave that we could stand on. No longer having to tread water, we were able to take a closer look at the cave.
While we were standing there, the sun was making it’s move toward the horizon and it cast some of the most incredible rays I’ve ever seen.
Looking out from within the cave we both were in awe of the scene. Crepuscular rays came down and illuminated the open water. Underneath the surface the rays bounced around while a variety of fish swam back and forth. Looking into the cave, the walls were illuminated by the golden hour sunlight.
Standing there, amazed by the view, we talked about how beautiful it was and whether or not we should run back to our jungle house to get our cameras.
As much as we wanted to and as much as we tempted the idea of taking two minutes to retrieve our cameras, we couldn’t do it.
It was too beautiful of a setting to risk not being there and missing it.
We waited until the sun went down and the moment was passed before we left. For the next 5 days I went back at the exact same time trying to find it.
I ended up with the images you see above, one looking out, one looking in. The one looking into the cave is a favorite of mine.
I remember tweaking with settings to get the image, but I don’t really remember the beauty of the moment like that first day when Alex and I just watched and admired.
I guess the question is, how do you find a balance?
How do you decide what moments you photograph and what moments you don’t?
In general I would say I take far less pictures than I should. When it comes to blogging I don’t even want to think about how I compare to others. haha
I think what I’m doing works for me. It’s a good combination of living and capturing life through images.