The Point of Pictures

I have loved taking pictures for as long as I can remember. It was recently, however, that a friend of mine left me wondering: what is the point of pictures?

According to Ed Sheeran, photographs are a place where love and memories are kept. A place where eyes never close, hearts never break, and time is forever frozen still. A photograph is the pause button of life, the only way to hold on to what you knew because the moments they show never change while the people in them do. Photography “remembers little things,” Aaron Siskind said, “long after you have forgotten everything.”

“What is it about a moment that moves you enough to capture it?” Asked Monica Shulman, a contributor to the Huffington Post. “A wave will never crash against the shore in the same way, my kids will only have one birthday celebration a year, and the light might never touch a person’s face like that again, and the camera is there to document and preserve that moment so that it can live and move you forever.”

“This is what I like about photographs, they’re proof that once, even if just for a heartbeat, everything was perfect.”

Jodi Picoult

So the point of pictures is to remember. We take photos as a return ticket to a moment otherwise gone, to relive treasured memories and share their magic with others. If you want to learn what someone fears losing, watch what they photograph. If you think photos are not important, wait until they are all you have left.