Once upon a time – and not that long ago – a photographer would have to wait for hours, if not days, in order to view his or her photographs. A single shot would have to be planned in order to maximise the chances of obtaining that single, perfect moment captured on photographic paper.
The digital camera made photographers of us all, allowing us to take hundreds of shots and view them the same day on our computer monitors. Cropping, editing, rotating and special effects allowed us to get as creative as professional re-touchers, albeit possibly lacking their finesse.
The end of an era for Kodak
The unstoppable rise of the smartphone caused yet another sea change in the way we all interact with our photography, and has been the final nail in the coffin for Kodak, early pioneers of analogue photography in the dim and very distant past. A report in The Independent details the early inroads that Kodak made into digital photography, apparently without ever considering the long-term implications that the new technology might have on its core business.
The future’s bright for photo frames
Now we are all professional photographers, taking as many shots as we choose and editing, viewing and deleting them at the touch of a button. This is great news for anyone in the framing business of course. Companies such as http://wallspace.co.uk can supply customers with a huge selection of frames so that prized photographic gems can be displayed with pride. In fact the demand is so high that wholesale photo frames are the order of the day, so that keen amateur photographers can display their finest works ‘en masse’.
Thanks to cameras contained within the ubiquitous smartphone, we all have the capability of recording every moment of our daily lives. Social media is filled with endless pages detailing photographs of what we are eating, buying and watching. An endless fascination with taking photographs of ourselves against various backdrops has even coined a new word into our language – the ‘selfie’.
A recent article in The Guardian points out that psychologists have identified a new syndrome known as ‘photo-taking impairment effect’ in which we rely on the camera lens to experience an event for us, even though we are physically present. We are actually failing to be mentally ‘present’ in the moment. You only have to witness a music festival or gig to see the number of people waving their smart camera-phones in the air to record the event that they will then watch back later.
Now any one of us can film things of national and international importance as they happen, meaning that most disasters and other newsworthy events can be found online within minutes of occurring. Professional news teams do not always get the best shots, leading to a complete change in the face of reporting. Professional photographers can still find a niche market, particularly for major events such as weddings, but the inexorable rise of the smartphone with built-in camera has changed the way we view photography for good.