Photograph the Minutiae

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My clean kitchen
(A picture of my kitchen, in a momentary state of cleanliness.)

When we take photographs, we tend to stick to the significant events that happen in our lives. Vacations, holidays, graduations, birthdays, and other occurrences that will stand out in our memories in years to come. We take pictures of the places we’ve traveled to, the sights that we’ve marveled at, and made static those moments in time that are meaningful to us.

But what about our, normal, routine life that we live through each and every day? How will we remember those days? We continue to change and grow, in ways that seem almost nonexistant when looked upon day by day, but those changes add up over time. We just don’t notice them until we look back.

My spot in the living room.
(“My” spot in the living room, from which I do most of my writing.)

I came to realize a, well, gap in the photographs of my life. Sure, I have vacation pictures galore, but I have very few photos of the house that I grew up in, and no pictures of the village I called home. I have few photos of the place I live in right now. No pictures of my very first car, or the bikes my husband and I bought last summer. The kids, now that they’ve grown and moved out, appear less and less in pictures. I don’t have a photograph of any of the places I’ve ever been employed.

What I’m getting at is this: don’t forget to photograph the minutiae of your life – the details that you think right now are boring or inconsequential, but that you may look upon later with a rush of recollection and nostalgia. What does your home look like now, how is it decorated, how is the furniture arranged, what color are the walls? What does the yard look like now? What are you driving? Which bedspread are you using? How do YOU look? What is your hairstyle like? What kind of clothing are you favoring? Where do you work? What is on your desk, on your walls?

My favorite mug, my favorite breakfast.
(My favorite mug, my favorite breakfast.)

What does your neighborhood look like right now? The corner? The town you live in? What do you see on your daily route to work, or to the grocery store, or to the post office?

This weekend, I offer you a challenge. Take pictures of the silly little details of your life. Take a photo while you’re sitting at your kitchen table eating breakfast. Sit in your favorite spot in the living room and take a picture of your viewpoint. Head out into your back yard or front yard, and take a picture of your house. Walk around your neighborhood and photograph what you see every day. Take a self portrait wearing your favorite pair of jeans or even your comfy pajamas.

It is important to record what your life is like now, so that you can appreciate the changes that have occurred when you look back upon them years from now.

We’d love to see your contributions! Feel free to share them in the comments, or on Beyond Megapixels’ Flickr Group. Sherry wrote a great post about photographing your home, check it out for some tips! Happy Friday!

Photo credits (all): Tiffany Joyce.

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