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Thursday, 28 May 2009
September 1975.
When I think of my grandparents, I always picture them as older people. My grandfather was a veteran of the second world war. He smoked a pipe, sat at the head of the table in family dinners and took me fishing. To me, my grandfather could never have been a child. He was always an older adult.

True I have seen pictures of him when he was young and when he got married, but because they are black and white photos they are some how veiled from reality.

In the 1960's cheap color photography became available to the masses. Introducing the missing element of color, photos were now much closer to the reality we experienced. We see in color, remember in color and now photos were in color. Accurate color photos removed the mystery.

These thoughts started to crystallize when I stumbled on a picture of myself taken in 1975 on my first day of elementary school. A 6 year old boy ready to go to school, holding his lunch box while standing in front of our neighbor's garden. It has accurate color, it hasn't faded. I like to think I was a pretty cute little guy, but there is no mystery to the photo, it could of been taken last fall. (Well, my wife says the pants give it away). But it was taken 34 years ago, about 1/2 a lifetime.

In times past, the wealthy had portraits painted to record their likeness. But these paintings were even more veiled in mystery than black and white photos. But then in the last century, for the first time in human history, color photography enabled middle class people to accurately and vividly document our lives.

What does this expose? It exposes our fleeting youthful years, the shortness of life, our mortality. But on a more positive note, take a look at what it has allowed this family to do: Smile!


Posted by: Flipbac
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