Preserving Memories

On a good day, I live with my camera hanging from my neck. I’ve spent hundreds of hours taking thousands of photos of my best friends, complete strangers, grungy rooms and vibrant memories.

I live for capturing moments.

Sometimes my heart is so big or so fond of one time that I almost cry just flipping through my folders.

I guess I take so many photos because I know how much I’m going to miss that moment even when I’m in the middle of it.

I’ve had this constant battle my whole life with the freeing feeling of letting go and being in it and the crippling thought of not being able to go back to it. For me, to revisit a moment is to revisit a friend, a feeling, a piece of me.

As time keeps moving forward, my photos turn to memories of past versions of myself.

In reality, I’m scared.

I’m scared that I will forget.

I’m scared that I’m going to lose some sense of myself, where I came from or what I used to be. I’m scared of getting older. I’m scared that who I want to become and who I am becoming aren’t the same person.

That’s actually quite true.

My photos remind me that I am not today who I wanted to become when I was younger because my thoughts and my being are constantly evolving into something better than that.

I’m scared that I will be forgotten.

So I capture moments and I make things and I try to become the person I know I can be — Remembered.

I find comfort in knowing that if I wasn’t here, thousands of photos would’ve never been taken. I’m madly in love with the feeling of contributing to the world and to the lives of others; happily blissful in the fact that I have a purpose.

For me, photography is life.

A photo reminds me of a time and a place. 
I can remember the feeling. I can feel it — like it was yesterday. I can relive a conversation with friends, I can radiate with happiness from that memory.

Some people would give anything to relive a feeling.

And I’ve got over ten thousand feelings — boxed up, organized by date and description, tagged on social media and backed up to the cloud, because I’ll never let them go.

Nervousness — I introduced my new clothing company at my friends event. 
Embarassment — I should’ve held the mic closer.
Joy — dad told me how proud of me he was.
Hope — for the future.
Love and Respect — for the support of my wonderful friends.
Six feelings. One day. One photo.

Photography is a complex language.

Photography is history.

History lets you remember your mistakes.

You should never forget your mistakes. 
Keep them close by. 
Remember them, respect them and look at them often.

Through my photography, I have a story.

A story of life. 
Complex, emotional, frustrating and full of love.

To be able to look back at your life and follow it. 
To relive past encounters and remember the value of your relationships. 
The benefits of capturing these moments are exponential to me.

I needed to hear myself say it. 
To say that it’s okay to simultaneously experience and preserve.

I’ve been struggling with letting go because I felt that I was missing out. When in reality, capturing these moments and allowing myself to marinate with them, to go back to them to relive a memory and experience a feeling, to repurpose them into my future creative endeavors, that is an integral piece of who I am.

There are some small moments that I will leave solely for myself. But for most of them, my Canon will be right there with me.

I will continue to capture, revisit, repurpose and relive my memories time and time again.