Instagram, Facebook, Boomerang, Layout, Prisma, Waterlogue, Shutterfly and Techlab are the 8 apps I have on my phone in addition to the camera function. There are multiple albums and hashtags and places to store and share both the big and mundane daily moments of my life. My daughter’s days are covered and then some and I know I’m not alone in this. I love that so many things are saved. Do I share them all? Not a shot, but I certainly treasure them.
Gone are the days of dropping off your film, waiting to pick up, requesting “doubles” to share with your friends and then being excited to see how they turned out. I can’t tell you how often I was disappointed by entire rolls of blurry photos because the flash wasn’t working properly or multiple closed eye shots that would never make a frame. (Don’t even get me started on my near constant red eye which I blame on my large pupils and/or my demonic possession.) This aspect I don’t miss, but I would be lying if I didn’t admit to actually liking to hold the photo and then put that photo in a frame.
Being hired to organize someones’ home is very personal. I see their closets, their bedrooms, I’m in their private space and I am very respectful of this position. I find all sorts of items when cleaning but consistently I come across boxes of photographs and albums, long since forgotten and never usually sorted through. I’m not trying to pry but I’ve found beautiful young brides, charming children playing from vacations in a bygone era, parties filled with cocktails and cigarettes and handsome men in uniform. Despite the fact these people aren’t my relatives I always find the photos to be beautiful and nostalgic. I’m always struck by how young the people look and how different the time was yet how similar the family photos are to ones most likely on your phone right now. I hope that when I turn them over there will be a name scrawled in old fashioned cursive, a date or even location. All too often there isn’t and it’s such a shame. The photo is there but it would be hard to tell the whole story because family tree and memories get muddled over time and faces change with age. If I could convey one thing it’s this: Caption your photos with a quick note of Who, What ,Where and When. Years from now what a treasure you’ve left behind, a family story that gets remembered.
Here is just one of mine.I have a lot of old family photos up around my home, mixed right in with more current family memories. This photo is hung next to my bed and is of my maternal Great Grandparents, the Hathaways. This was taken on their wedding day in the 1920’s. If you look closely you’ll notice that my Great Grandfather is standing on a wooden box so that he appears taller than his bride. I love this small detail for the humor it brings to an otherwise serious photo. You can imagine the awkward suggestion by the professional hired that day, I sometimes wonder if the bride was amused. What I love though is that I know the story and have shared it with my daughter for whom these are her Great-Great Grandparents. It makes me a bit teary to think of the two very tall sons this young couple went on to have, my Grandfather and late Great Uncle. Although they would never have a chance to meet them, they would have 10 grandchildren, 18 great grandchildren, 7 great-great grandchildren and 2 on the way. This is where it began. All of the family members have copies of this beautifully framed wedding photograph and we all know the story, Thank goodness for the caption and this wedding day.