I don’t like photographs; they’re too objective. Admittedly, I am to being photogenic what Hitler was to being kind-hearted but that’s not what I’m basing my views upon. To the contrary, I think being photogenic probably makes people like photographs more than they should. Yes, that’s a cheap dig at people who take pictures of themselves. Odd lot, they are.
I don’t like photos because they’re unquestionably real. Even though they’re not. Forget Photoshop (because it completely validates my point, thus ruining my fun) for a minute. What happens in a photo can’t be called into question: If I say I’m sure that my friend was wearing a black top a photo can prove they were wearing blue. I don’t like that. Not simply because I dislike being wrong — I’m never actually wrong anyway, merely temporarily confusing my realities — but because that’s boring. I want my memories to paint a picture for me. Memories are beautiful, subjective things. I can exaggerate the things I love and minimise the things I don’t. I can paint on to a mental canvas with vivid, inspiring colours. If I take a photo in the wrong light a serene moment can be tarnished forever. A memory doesn’t just store what something looked like, it stores the feeling.
Photographs freeze a solitary moment and make it immortal. The problem is that mortality is beautiful in and of itself, something so precious yet shared so sparingly. If I want to capture something and treasure it forever, I’ll use my mind’s eye because it lets the moment breathe with me.
I don’t like photographs, they’re callous, objective things. Memories, on the other hand, are miracles of subjectivity.