How keeping a camera handy can help you find your muse
"THE CREATIVE ACT LASTS BUT A BRIEF MOMENT, A LIGHTNING INSTANT OF GIVE-AND-TAKE, JUST LONG ENOUGH FOR YOU TO LEVEL THE CAMERA AND TO TRAP THE FLEETING PREY IN YOUR LITTLE BOX."
Old snapshots can be portals to creative inspiration and keeping a camera with you is a good way to capture inspirational moments and preserve them for later use. With camera phones and digital cameras readily available, snapping a few pictures of an inspirational scene is easier than ever. After you capture your moment, you can then save it in a special folder for easy inspirational access.
You muse in a snapshot…
When photography was first developed 150 years ago, in order to capture a moment, a photographer had to get that moment to stand still for a few minutes as the light from the flash burned the image onto a copper plate that had been coated in silver. While these daguerreotype images are haunting and inspirational in their own way, the fact that they required long exposure times, made it hard to truly capture a singular moment. Still, as technology progressed and camera became more mobile, people were soon capturing images that became portals to the past.
Later on, as the technology of capturing images and storing them for posterity progressed, it soon became possible to truly capture a moment or an image almost instantaneously with a camera that you could fit in your pocket or keep on a strap around your neck. Then, after processing the film, you could keep it in an album so that you could back to that moment or image and once again find inspiration. For those who did not want to wait around for film to be processed, Polaroid cameras were also available that allowed you instant (albeit a little less focused) moment capturing gratification.
Nowadays, if someone wants to capture a moment or image, all they need to do is whip out their digital camera or cell phone and snap away, and then immediately look at the result to make sure they captured what they wanted. Now, a beautiful sunset, a happy reunion, graffiti art that you see on the street and any other image or moment that inspires you can be caught in one of these little magic boxes. These moments can be saved and viewed in a vast number ways: on the computer, on a micro SD Disk, on the device itself, or even printed out onto photo paper and then saved in a traditional album like the good old days.
The inspirational value of these portals into different moments in time is obvious. Who has not gone through a photo album (be it paper or digital) and found inspiration? Who has not come across an old image that they captured found their mind spinning with ideas wrought from the dug up memories? Keeping one of these image capturing devices handy whenever you are out and about and remembering to use it whenever you come across something that you may want to look at later is good way to continue to get ideas and inspirations from these moments.
A good way to keep these images near so that they might help stoke your imagination is to keep them in a special album that you can refer to later. Another way you can keep them on your mind is to save them onto a slide show and use it as your P.C.s background so that they are constantly cycling through and bringing you new inspiration. You can also save them on a digital picture frame in the same manner. Whatever device you use to capture these moments and whatever media you choose to save them on, taking the time to take a snapshot of something interesting may help spur your muse later on.