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Why Taking Picture is The Worst Thing You Can Do in Any Life Time Event

Shilpa Suwal During Wedding in Nepal

My sister’s wedding just went in a flash. I was enjoying the moment, now it’s gone. When we look back after a year or so, we’ll be like, “Wow! time traveled so fast.”

Life is fleeting.

Lots of events that happen now will not make sense after 1000’s of years, but it does make sense now. The moment is what matters the most. When I’m left in a life time event like marriage, I always face dilemma. Should you enjoy the moment to the fullest or get anxious that this beautiful moment will pass away eventually, even if you don’t want to?

Generally, we are all anxious.

It’s because we take pictures – lots of pictures during those moments. We don’t want that moment to fade away. We just want it to stay with us forever.

People who enjoy the moment fully usually don’t waste time taking photographs. They try to chill and make full use of the moment.

If you were to close your eyes and look back at time, you’ll be able to clearly visualize those wonderful moments you had, which you couldn’t capture on photographs. However, instead of experiencing the moment, if you were busy trying to capture it, then you’d lose that moment.

Moments which you don’t have photographs are very precious. It’s counterintuitive, but the moments which you failed to capture are usually the most precious ones. It’s because it lives right under the memory with you.

More than photographic memory, I have visual memory of me going to the school for the first time and playing with my friends.

You experience happiness when you’re not thinking about being happy. It only happens when you fully emerge yourself to the moment.

I always think resisting temptation to capture the moment is the right approach, but I always fail at it. As soon as I’m left in the middle of life time event, I get anxious that it’ll end and I’ll never get to experience it again. So I try to take as many photographs as I can to save the moment, with hope that I’ll get to experience that particular moment again with the help of photographs.

But the sad part is that I ruin the moment by taking photographs. The moment when we should have had fun. But instead of having fun, I ruin it by trying to capture it.

The only thing I remember during any life time event is trying hard to capture the moment. All I remember was pushing people so that I could take that perfect photograph.

I felt something was wrong with it. I’m trying to cut back on it and enjoy the moment by practicing mindfulness – now that I’ve realized it.

I recently stumbled across a great paragraph from the minimalists:

There seems to be two problems with this incessant picture-taking behavior, and I myself have been an accomplice to said problem for way too long.

First, by fumbling around with my device, looking for the best angle and filter, snapping the picture, viewing the picture, and then often retaking the shot in an effort to get the “right” photo, I’m missing the actual moment. My desire to capture the moment actually ruins the moment. It makes it less beautiful, less real, and in many ways less photo-worthy.

Second, the “result” is artificial. Time doesn’t happen in this kind of take-and-retake way. We don’t get to re-do the experiences of our lives. And yet we take our pictures as if we can “get it just right.” It gives us a false sense of security, a sense that we can not only change the moment, but somehow save only its best parts. The fact of the matter is that the best parts exist because of the worst parts, not despite them. We cannot enjoy life’s mountains without its valleys.

Wedding

I never got chance to see complete wedding before. Fortunately, this was my cousin’s wedding, so I got to see most part of it.

The worst part was that all my photos were horrible. I neither took good pictures nor did I emerged myself fully to the moment.

That’s one reason why I’m cutting back on photographs.

As I mentioned in the previous post, I tried doing everything to save everyday moment by taking pictures and videos. At the end, however, I settled for ‘1 Second Everyday.

Here are some photographs of the wedding which I extracted from my sister’s FB:

Shilpa Suwal on Wedding Day

Shilpa Suwal Putting Wedding Ring to Subash Maharjan's Finger

Subash Maharjan Putting Bangel on Shilpa Suwal's Hand during Wedding

However, the point of this post was not to argue against taking pictures, but to be mindful about it. I think the best approach would be to hire a photographer and let him do his job, while you fully emerge yourself to the moment.

What do you think? Is it necessary that we take photographs, but only by being mindful about it? Or take numerous photographs so that we can save the moment forever. Or maybe, not take any photographs at all (I think it’s hard)?

Didn’t have a camera by my side this time

Hoping I would see the world through both my eyes

Today I finally overcame trying to fit the world inside a picture frame

Maybe you should have seen that sunrise with your own eyes

It brought me back to life

-John Mayer, “3×5″

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Comment

  1. When you take a photo you are viewing everything through a screen, not directly, so you’re missing some of the reality of the moment you’re trying to capture. Of course we want to take photos, but not so many that you miss the event itself. I love the beautiful photos in your post too, so I’m glad you took them.

  2. Without the photos from your sister’s facebook, you wouldn’t have been able to share them with us? I like taking photos (sometimes at the most special places) to then be able to tell stories, share the experience with others and jog my memory.

    Just my two cents 🙂

    P.S. The minimalists should be quoting you, they’ve got nuthin’.

    • The photos I shared above were not captured by us. There was a cameraman at work who captured it.

      I personally think that’s the best approach because we can concentrate and enjoy the moment whereas the cameraman will perform his job.

      P.S. You are insanely logical.

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