Wednesday 14 November 2012

Photos vs Memories

We had a little bonfire night party.
It was chaos.
Small kids running a-mock and getting excited about fire, cooking oodles of sausages and lots of (very) spicy sweet potato chips (recipe courtesy of Dizzy Loves Icy - this was my second time making them and it won't be my last) feeling light headed from drinking mulled wine and getting confused over whose glass was whose, and of course just having a nice time with friends.

And amongst the chaos I didn't take any arty photos of the food, or of the children's faces glowing in the light of the fireworks or the cold fingers wrapped around warm glasses, or even of the spooky carved pumpkins that were grinning at us. I did pick up my camera very briefly during the fireworks (as you can tell).

Because, sometimes in recording the moment the moment is just a bit less enjoyable.
I love my camera and I dream of a life that looks like a spread in Kinfolk magazine but the reality is my life doesn't look like that (except very occasionally with a bit of help from instagram).

Maybe it's better to have no photos sometimes, to rely on my memory more, or allow my memory to add the filters?
I don't want to forget anything right now, the time flies by and Henry and Coco are both changing so fast, I want to bottle it all and I suppose I worry that all the good times that aren't recorded will get forgotten.
I don't have many clear memories of my childhood - and my parents don't have many photos either, but I'm not sure if looking back at photos of events I don't remember would create a 'false' memory anyway?

Which ever way round it is, we'll never know.
I will still strive to make you all believe that my life is full of beauty and happiness* and in that way it probably will be just a little bit more beautiful and possibly a bit happier too.
And occasionally maybe I'll just revert to words instead.

*But you'll know the reality, right?

** I hadn't meant to have a bit of a blogging break, but it happens sometimes, life takes over, there are lots of things I want to post about. Just. Need. To. Find. Time.
That old chestnut!


  1. Reality is SO SO different isn't it! It's lovely to capture the memories of course, but enjoying them for what they are at that time is what's important. I'm sure my 3 will love the millions of photos that will span over time, but i do sometimes worry if they get the chance to 'remember' anything in their way, rather than mine if that makes sense? I have millions of memories from my childhood, yet very few photos. Food for thought...

    I love your blog though, it's organic & natural & beautiful. x

  2. this is a subject that is very close to my heart! I wrote my dissertation on the family album, and how we capture childhood and construct memories. I find it fascinating, and like how you said, do we remember the actual event or the photograph of said event and construct a memory around that?

    As a 'photographer' i always feel such a guilt when I'm not taking photos, that I need to be taking them to clarify that something actually happened, that we were having fun etc..but in reality sometimes its great just to forgot and to get caught up in the moment, and not be the one on the edge recording it. Life behind the lens can sometimes be a little lonely! and I'm sure looking back you'll remember an event a lot more by being part of it rather than recording it. there just won't be as many pretty photos!

    for me my childhood memories are kind of separated; the ones that all merge together that give me a feeling of what my childhood was like, like how each bonfire night is kind of the same (but great!) in my head, compared to the memories I have from specific moments that I have seen in photographs. both are important and have their place and I'm sure our children will look back with a good mix of both too!

    anyway that's the end of my rant! soz!

  3. I know exactly how you feel. Everytime I do or see something that I want to remember I'm tempted to pull out my iphone and immortalize the moment. The other day, as I was on a merry-go-round with Swann, I spent most of the time erasing old pictures to be able to take new ones, it is ABSOLUTELY ridiculous. I keep saying I will print some of the nice pictures I've taken and put dozens of them on the stairs wall, but I haven't done it yet.
    It's hard to find a good balance: feeling bad because you don't take pictures of "this" moment vs feeling bad because in a way you don't really live the moment when you are behind your camera.
    Personnaly I have a very bad memory, and I know if I didn't have pictures to remind me, most of what I live would disapear in the depths of my unconsciousness before I even know something happened. But I'm not fooled by the process and I know it's just another way to not let time go, and keep in pictures all the details of life that keep slipping through my fingers.
    In other words: we're in the same boat Alexis :)

    PS: Florina baked "witch fingers" for Halloween with her friends: completely desgusting! They loved it and kept dipping them in blood (ketchup) with a totally vicious pleasure, I almost envied them to be that brave (I was more about to throw up when I had to taste one - pretty good though, if you don't look at what you're eating...)