Sunday, 29 December 2013

A capture of today for tomorrow's history

Google plus, wordpress, photoshelter, facebook, twitter, rss feeds, ipads, andriods, smartphones.. erm.. smart tv, the list goes on and on yet just seven years ago the list was but a small percentage of this.

Why do I comment on this? Something so obvious, so real, so much part of our society, our social interaction? Simple, just seven years ago I ended my involvement in a project in which I had through hard graft, time-consuming daily self-education,  self-training, coding and re-coding (where I didn't have a clue what the words code scripts meant before that) managed to launch a news service which reached the homes of many, and formulated the interest of many others when the reach of online news media was recognised through this service.

So much so was the influence that thinkers, shakers and movers locally thought long and hard on how to regulate, limit, restrict, influence and make use of such a service, to the very detriment of the service itself.

The dream in those days was to have something like an ipad, smartphone, G3 connection in which by the very press of a key the words typed out, the images captured and the audio and video recorded could be uploaded for the world to see. Instead, it was time consuming labour, sweat and innovation that got us to do what today any child can do with their iphone and social media/blog links. A mobile phone connection, an mp3 recorder, a small digital camera and a lot of running around for a dial-up connection was enough to provide timely news feeds, which many a time was way ahead of the competition.

I could easily think back and ponder on what could have been. The truth is that it does not matter as innovation in technology would have more than likely gone way ahead of the finances provided by the services and led to its ultimate demise; that plus in truth the fact that two people, without a technological background would have been unlikely to master the technology to upgrade in time to meet the demands.

Today, after what you can call seven years of sabbatical from the media, I look forward to a return to the same industry, but with a new and far more focused approach. Nearly six years in law enforcement has taught me one thing, what I thought I knew about our society was not as real as the reality itself. The opinions, the politics, the to and fro of every day debates, as seen in social media, the local media itself reflects little of what our society encompasses.

What the eyes have seen, few have visualised or even comprehend. The social fabric of our own society is a maze of tiers which is cloaked by the very nature of our social structures and perceptions. The levels of interpretation of our own society changes between the very tiers that form it. Such a simple thing as night time takes on a new meaning when you have lived night times, worked it, and monitored it.

More importantly it is no longer the words that matter, but the documentation through visual images of our own society that has brought about a new focus on what is important.

The search for being ahead of the competition ceased the moment I stepped back and looked again. The search for what mattered started the moment I did just that.

As such it is equipped with a camera and lens, and with the knowledge of all that has been learnt in the past, and present future, that photography, or as I prefer calling it image capture or image creation takes on a new form.

Documenting the present, to show in the future what the past was seems as important a role as any other I have taken.

Unlike the words written in the past, spoken or posted, images live on forever. Our history is formulated, created and documented today for tomorrow. And like all fine artists who aspire to achieve hope of satisfaction, the art must be viewed, exhibited and shown to others for it to have any value. Today I aspire to be the artist I sought to be, and one day when i write of today, I hope it will not be of a failing, but of a legacy which I leave behind. For that to happen everyday will be a new day in which what I do must be better done than yesterday.