This is my dad. I only have a handful of photos of this man taken during the time that I knew him. The rest are loose passport pictures, shots of Dad as a boy, and his wedding pictures to my mom. That's it. A whole life, and all I have is a couple of precious photographs.
Dad died when I was 11, and this photograph was one he had taken for business when I was 5 or 6. It was a picture for his company's annual report, something he had to do for business, and now it's one of the most precious things in my home.
I've been looking through my mom's photo albums and she has photographs of her grandmother when she was a young girl. Imagine that, a photograph of my daughter's great, great grandmother. Except for my mom and a few of her relatives, no one else in the world is alive to remember this woman, who lived into her mid-nineties. But now I can hear stories about her while looking at a 100-year old print.
This is it. This is the life we get. You might exist in snap shots, but do those pictures live in your phone? Unfortunately, those will likely be forgotten, disregarded when you get a new device. They'll be in a folder on your computer somewhere, that you'll recycle someday. Do you have pictures of yourself that your relatives will want to hang on their wall or put on the mantle? I honor these people who came before me, and I hope my children's children's children will honor me.
For this reason, I'm committing to exist more in photos this year. I want my children to have beautiful portraits of their mom. I want them to see that I value them and value myself with the choice to exist in photographs. Join the movement #existinphotos