Taking photos is much cheaper and easier now compared to what it was a few years ago. Today, thanks to the digital era, taking hundred photos is as costly as taking thousand photos cost of each being zero rupees. As we see around us, it is quite obvious that everyone is busy clicking photos.
Photos taken by a person tell a lot about the person. When I was new to the city of Pune, I could see hundreds of beings busy taking their own photos. I even remember my first visit to Sarasbaug where many couples were busy clicking the selfies. I also remember a young man from some village who was wearing a pink shirt and a duplicate Rayban goggle and was being photographed with a foam stuffed tiger.
Many so called elite people were passing by and this poor fellow was the subject of their laughter. I also laughed. So funny. I labelled this as something very cheap.
Then I settled in Pune. Such cheap people photographing themselves was a common sight and a good topic to do mockery of.
I happened to go to a very lavish restaurant few weeks ago. A very hi-fi couple was sitting next to us. For most of the time, they were busy in clicking photos of the bottles of costly and rare liquor which they were consuming. Then came the food. Again they were busy clicking the photos. I looked around. Every table had a similar story to share.
I became more aware of people and made it a point to observe what photos they take. This activity revealed many funny and enlightening facts. It also gave birth to many questions.
Why do we take photos? The answer is to preserve the memories. But why do we share the photos? The answer is- to convince ourselves that were are special. We are facing some sort of hollowness inside. To cover that up, we take the help of photos. If we are poor villagers, we get clicked with a sponge stuffed tiger. If we are rich, we do it with a costly alcohol bottle or in front of a costly car.
They say each photo is worth thousand words. It is. It tells the unending story of human desire to get admired by others. It is an poor attempt to show others how rich you are. Each photo has a long tail of desires, assertions and ego. We are soon entering a world where photos are more important than actual human beings. A world where people are more worried about preserving than experiencing. If we have a look at photographs of rich and poor, they prove that both rich and poor are equally poor; both are hungry of recognition and admiration.
Should we stop taking photos then? Are all photos taken just for the sake of showmanship? I don’t think so. Photos are beautiful, having their own purpose. Just don’t use them as a tool to cover your inner hollowness.