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    Snapshots in time

    Life can pass by at an alarmingly fast rate. We take pictures in an attempt to capture the moment and slow it all down. Hoping that we will be able to recall exactly what it is that made the moment so special and worthy of capturing.

    But do we take the time to actually pause and remember those good times? It’s a question which I often ask myself. I’d like to think the whole reason for taking a photo is to use it to recall something at a later date. But I do wonder if at least part of the reason is so that I can feel like I can recall it, if I choose, more so than that I actually want to spend time recalling it.

    Yet, as I browse Facebook or Google Photos it is not uncommon to see active reminders pop up about these memories. By my math, these companies have smart people working for them so there must be a very positive response from users. A concept that TimeHop seems to have first started has clearly become a very mainstream way for companies to engage users with the user’s own data.

    Which brought me to my next conclusion – that framed pictures serve a similar purpose, if we let them. The logic here actually has two parts. The first is that we must take time to print and frame the pictures, including finding a place to display them. The second is that we must take the time to notice what we’ve put in the frames.

    On the first point, the specific pictures which we choose to print can be rather important. Do you really only want the professional looking photos, with all your friends lined up? Or do you want that photo of the crew hanging out in the basement where only one person is looking at the camera but, perhaps, is best at telling the story from your point of view – the way you remember it? Is it a photo that you’d be comfortable with anybody seeing, or a photo that is meant for those you know well enough to ask into your home?

    On the second point, you have to take time to notice. When was the last time that you really looked at that photo collage on the wall? Or noticed the background of your favorite picture of you and your partner? When was the last time you even noticed some of the photos at all? It’s so natural to have photos in our homes, but seemingly unnatural to take time to appreciate them.

    Here is a challenge to you, call it a notification if you want, take the time to walk through your home and notice the photos you have on display. Better yet, say out-loud to your partner, friend, kid, or pet what you remember about the photo. Not just who is in it or what it is of. Describe the emotions surrounding that day or what led you to take that specific photograph. You could do the same thing with the images, avatars, and profile pictures you have across the web.

    Make the time for it. I bet it will be a refreshing walk down memory lane.

    This has been a thought from The Cake Scraps.

    One response to “Snapshots in time”

    1. Douglas says:

      I think about this a lot! I often try to take time to point out objects or things around the house or even around my digital life when memories do pop up and tell stories I remember about those items to my partner (probably mostly for my own enjoyment, with my patient partner!). For me, the trick is to find the right balance between fondly remembering the past and becoming too nostolgic which actually makes me sad! Many times, I’ll take a moment and send a quick message on Facebook or by text to a person that pops up in my memory feeds, even if I haven’t talked to them in years. It always makes me feel nice to be in touch, and even better if they write me back and we share a brief update connection.

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