For most you, you don’t know I rent a flea market booth here in my hometown (You can shop online from their website… my booth is both #1… picture of my booth at bottom… www.ashtreeantiques.com) It’s a hobby of mine. Collecting antiques and other unused or forgotten items and letting others buy them is a lot of fun. I love the process. Finding the items (at garage sales or sometimes people are just getting rid of stuff and I take it off their hands), looking up the items online, pricing them, then finally staging my booth. Well recently my great aunt went through my great grandma’s, who passed away a few years prior, storage unit. She found many items that had no sentiment to her so she let my dad load them up and bring them to me to sale. I have yet to go through all the treasures I received and put them in my booth, but slowly and surely I will. Anyway, I’ve gone through about four totes full so far, but one stood out to me the most. It was a tote full of old papers and clippings. It had old commonwealth’s (our towns newspaper) and many things that were my Great Grandpa Bob’s. A lot of church books, pamphlets, but my favorite thing I found was what had to be a two years’ worth of an old magazine subscription called Friends. These magazines in particular were from 1955 and 1956, but it often refers to past years issues. So in lesser words these magazines are VERY ‘vintage.’ The covers are beautiful and in great shape and as I was reading a few issues I realized they were going to be great inspiration for my blog. I am able to compare and contrast the difference between now and then and there is much to learn from this magazine.
With this said, the very first inspiration struck me as I was reading an article called “The Right Moment” explaining what makes a ‘good’ photo. It talks about timing… making sure the subject of the photo is right where you want them to be to capture that perfect moment. These words are surrounded by beautiful black and white pictures.
This had me thinking… When did we start neglecting the art of good candid picture taking? I am not talking about the pictures you hire someone to take. I am talking about all those pictures in your phone. What kind of memories are you capturing? Are they worth keeping forever? Let me tell you… in my phone most of them are not (even though I print them all out… another art that is disappearing, but I digress). Anyway the fad now is the SELFIE. We all do it and they are fun, but one is enough and despite this fact, we all have hundreds of photos of just our faces and nothing else. According to our elders, these are not good pictures and I agree. They aren’t capturing a moment or a memory. We need to be conscience of this and make sure we take better photos as well. It’s important for your children and your children’s children to not open up albums and look at countless photos of your face filling up the whole frame without a clue of where you were or what you were doing. Photos are meant to freeze a moment in time to look back on and if we don’t take the right pictures we won’t have these memories. Your grandchildren will ask, “What were you doing here?” and most of us, not all, but most will most likely not be able to place the picture of only our faces with a certain moment. This is why I encourage people to step back, ask a by-stander to take a picture of you, your family, and friends in the actual moment you are experiencing.
This article was a great reminder that we should be mindful of taking photos that can paint a picture in our heads of a whole experience. For the split second we are looking at these photos we should be able to be transported back in time, feel what you felt and see what you saw. Make sure they can feel like they experienced it with you or you feel like you can experience something all over again. It’s a lesson we all need to make a conscience effort to apply to our lives.
I challenge everyone to take what Friends: April 1956 would consider a ‘good’ picture. Print them out and put them in albums. Your kids, grandkids and you yourself will appreciate it more than you will ever know.
Also, feel free to email me or post a photo in the comment section I can gather together and post many examples of ‘good’ photos.
My booth #1….
Many more to come. Side tables. Christmas trees. Dishes. Cookbooks. Coca-Cola products. Lamp. Home interior photos. Magazines. Vintage grinder. vases. Tupperware. Candlestick holders. etc.