I’ve been speaking about the value of a photograph often as of late. I feel one of the ways that photographers can help the industry and each other out is by educating people about the value of a photograph.
This world we live in is rich in history. Guess how most of that history is remembered. A photograph. There are pictures that are just simply too important, and are almost priceless. Think Mona Lisa. No it wasn’t shot by a photographer, but it is a photograph regardless.
Im going to use myself for an example. I carry around a picture in my wallet that I took of my nephews with a point and shoot a few years ago. If I lost my wallet, I would be losing 2 credit cards, some cash, a few book store cards, driver’s license, etc. My point is this, out of all of the things I would be losing, almost all of them are replaceable accept one. That little wallet sized photo of my nephews that I hold so dear would be gone. You can cancel credit cards and have them replaced. You can cut your losses with store discount cards. Heck, you can even replace your driver’s license and social security card if you lose those as well. But that picture of a loved one/s is priceless. Me personally, I’d be pissed off royally so to speak.
Think of all those relatives who have passed on and all you have left of them is a photograph. How important is that photograph to you?
What about the first photograph you took with the man/woman you’ve raised a family with and have been married to for the last 38 years? Is that an important photograph? Does it have value?
What about a slice of time in your life that you simply cannot convey into words, yet you have a photograph of it that speaks volumes? First kiss? First car? First house? The kiss at the altar? How about every graduation photograph from kindergarden to college? Do they have value?
We as photographers, have to educate, and remind people of the importance of what we do. We are the closest things to time machines. What we do has value.