A picture is not a life. Words I came by whilst watching a video on art. Words that truly reflect my creative process. What transpires before and after a still frame is captured remains unknown to the viewer. Only that which exists in the frozen moment in time and goes on to be translated by many based on their perception.
I’d like to think that we’re all aware of this notion that a picture is not a life when we peruse through the alternate world of social media. Yet, there have been quite a few studies showing that social media is ruining people’s life and in some instances driving them towards a state of depression. In this environment, comparison thrives. Some find themselves competing with others who don’t event know of their very existence. All logic becomes lost in a perception that chooses to focus on one visible frame amongst billions of unseen frames that could make up a persons lifetime.
I for one can appreciate how easy it is to draw conclusions based on a picture especially if the same well curated images are used to paint a bigger picture of oneself like social media feeds very much encourage. As a creator on the other hand, I know first hand what it takes to achieve such results which triggers a conscious analysis of what really is being depicted. This doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the message a picture is trying to convey, it just means I don’t draw conclusions beyond it as I keep the story within the frame
More often than not, before I take a picture, it’s one I’ve already seen in my mind. It’s safe to say the picture is a creation brought to life. The process of me thinking it through or the challenges I face to achieve the final image is not always captured. The mess lingering in the corner not caught in frame or what went on to become of the story we told in that moment in time remains unseen.
We have to learn to appreciate a picture for what it is. A frozen moment in time. A picture is not a life and it shouldn’t be. Life is what happens up until the lead up to that moment and many more uncaptured moments afterwards.