Early in 2013 I heard the mind-boggling statistic that 300 million photos were posted to Facebook every day. As hard as that is to comprehend, a few weeks ago NPR had a feature about Snapchat that said 400 million photos were posted every day! Not even counting Instagram or Twitter, my guess is that if we are not already approaching the creation of 1 billion photos a day, we have to be close.
My first thought when hearing these mind numbing statistic was to wonder how long it took since the first Camera Obscura was created almost 200 years ago for the first billion photos to be shot. Now we have that every day.
My guess is that I shot about 100,000 images about in 2013, which in today’s social media terms represents about 8.6 seconds. Sometimes that really makes me wonder where this whole photography thing is going. Is one picture still worth a thousand words? Is photography still considered an art form or has it now become achieved the same status as a post-it note?
Photography has become possibly the world’s most democratic art form. Anyone can take a photo at anytime and any place! Unfortunately some people do; but just because you can, it doesn’t mean you should.
Have we devalued the photo from a thousand words, to being only one word? Sometimes I think the word is Lunch, and other times the word is Why?
We truly have amazing technology available to us, ranging from our smart phones to the state-of-the-art SLRs like my Canon 1Dx. It is so incredibly easy to pull out my iPhone and get a shot. But that doesn’t mean that all photos are created equal.
Although I philosophically struggle with this, I believe there is a place for it all, the photos of your lunch, the selfie, your pet and the weather; all along side of the image that can stand alone and tell a story. The new world of photography has created a visual diary for all of us.
Hoping that you will agree with me, I have included a few images from my 2013 travels. I hope that you will find that each can tell you a story, provide you a context and if I am lucky, make you smile.
Saving the best for last, this final photo was taken by my daughter Liz Radtke using her iPhone 4.