Photographs and videos are so ubiquitous these days that it almost seems redundant to celebrate a Photograph Month. Social media overflows with images. Sites like Instagram, Photobucket, and Flickr crowd the web with ever more photographs than a person can ever enjoy. Images of instants in time are memory jogs. They stuff albums. Altered images express creativity. All a person can do is just randomly jump into the continuous stream.
It seems like such a shame to take a picture, admire and share it for a few moments, then file it away. Do we intend to look at it sometime in the far away future? By that time, we’ll have hundreds of pictures squirreled away in our archives. When we’re dead and gone, who will admire our pictures of lunch at Chipotles? Who will care about the vacation snapshots we took at Seaworld? Perhaps some future historian or anthropologist will include them in a master’s thesis?
I have arrived at that period in life when nostalgia becomes a stronger urge. It’s a time of searching through old photo albums and data files. That is exactly what happened this weekend, as I whittled down the choices for inclusion in today’s blog post. Many memories bubbled up in my mind, as I tried to narrow the choices.
A friend and I visited western India several Februaries ago for nearly a month. The antique structure is Chemnakeshava, a temple complex dedicated to Shiva near Mysore in South India. My pal, three Tibetan monks, and I took the short drive from the city to experience this historical site. I also remember that one of the monks came down with a stomach ailment during the afternoon. Otherwise, the day was filled with my utter fascination with the structures. This image was taken with a Canon Sure Shot point and shoot camera on Kodacolor 200 35mm film.
A week later, we left our monk friends and took the train to Mumbai. Our host, his young son, my friend, and I hired an SUV for a daytrip to Daharu Beach on the coast of the Arabian Sea north of Mumbai. The swim in the sea, washed away my sunscreen, causing me to suffer the worst case of sunburn in my entire life. Even the smallest ray of sunshine filtering through the trees was acutely painful.
I ended up spending the rest of the afternoon sipping coconut water and taking photos. Two brothers with the family’s bullock cart presented an opportunity for an artistic composition. This was also taken with the same Sure Shot camera and Kodacolor 200 film.
Yellowstone National Park is my all time favorite vacation destination. I’ve visited it ten times. The bubbling geysers, mud pots, and hot springs are much of the fascination. I had been shooting images with my Canon AE-1 and Kodachrome 64 slide film when the sky suddenly darkened with ominous, dark overcast. I grabbed a couple of handheld shots of Mammoth Hot Springs. This one is my favorite.
Every summer, our town hosts a showoff event for owners of classic and custom vehicles. The Saturday of the event is “Cruise Night”. Owners of the cars drive a circuitous route through the town, including Norfolk Avenue, our main street. A couple of years ago, I brought my little Sanyo 5X VPC-51415 digital camera downtown to document the night. This well-done 1967 Chevy Nova was one of the most attractive cars of the evening.
One of the most pleasant places in Norfolk, Nebraska is just south of town. Ta Ha Zouka Park features plenty of shade trees and green space. The centerpiece of the park is the lagoon. One early fall afternoon, four children and four geese unknowingly presented an artistic moment. Luckily, I had my trusty Olympus Camedia C-60 Zoom, point and shoot, camera along for photo opportunities.
I’m going to continue flipping through my photo album books and digital storage media for awhile longer. National Photograph Month is helping me relive some great times.