Back in my day, you had to go to a physical store to have your film developed before you could see the pictures you’d shot! Of course, the walk to the store was ten miles, uphill each way, in waist-deep snow. You’d also think twice about even taking a picture, because you only had 24 shots, and you didn’t want to run out of film!
I’m so thankful for the memories I now have that might have been missed had it not been for digital photography. This technological advancement has allowed anyone with a passing interest in photography to take good pictures through trial and error and immediate feedback. You can check the focus and the lighting immediately after snapping the picture, allowing you to make any adjustments needed before the moment passes. I was never into taking pictures before, when the cost of crummy pictures was so high. Digital photography has reduced the effective cost of taking a photograph to almost nothing. It has allowed me to join millions of others who can now dabble in this hobby and have the ability to create decent images fairly easily. Sure, we probably take way too many photographs and we waste time sorting through them, but the benefits are a vastly larger pool of quality pictures we’ll want to save for years to come.
I’m in the process of backing up my photos from an external drive to cloud storage. As I’ve been moving photos, it’s been so fun to look back at the memories I would have lost without pictures to document them. I have a terrible memory for events in my past, so I count on photographs to remind me of all of the wonderful things I have been lucky enough to experience with friends and family. For example, without digital photography, I would never have remembered that our family went to see the Goatalympics at our local fairgrounds last year! I am especially thankful for digital photography as a newer father, as it allowed me to take thousands upon thousands of images as our son has grown over his first four years. We already cherish these pictures, and their importance to us will continue to grow as he grows. I’m grateful for the treasure trove of memories I have thanks to digital photography.
Image: Our family’s feet, on vacation in Chelan in 2015. I never would have taken a picture like this with a film camera, but I love this shot. It takes me back to the exact moment, when the three of us were happily wading in the clear, cool water of Lake Chelan with the afternoon sun warming our faces.