If a person’s house catches fire, what are the things people will risk their lives to save? Aside from the obvious answers of people and pets, the most coveted item to be saved from the house burning down are family portraits and photo albums. Family photo albums and family portraits on the wall are some of the most important objects to us, and yet lots of us take them for granted.
We often don’t realise the importance of family photographs until it is too late. A lot of us go looking for family photos when we lose a person close to us and it is only natural, we look to our family photographs to help us remember. These photos are the ones that will put smiles on our faces and help us cope with the change of a person no longer being nearby.
Going through these photos and memories can be upsetting and comforting. Upsetting because sometimes we can’t find enough if any good photos. Especially these days with mobile phone cameras – more often than not they are quick snaps often blurred, busy backgrounds or not great quality.
Why do we present to you such a personal message? Because we want people to stop and think about the importance of family photos and family history… how we can share memories from one generation to the next. Something happens to us when we see pictures of our families. We well up with pride and want to show people; we travel back in time and can see and feel details long forgotten; we’re reminded of what matters and how time moves too quickly, and to treasure the moments we have today.
Photos, like memories and stories, are part of our legacy. We hold them close, we pass them down. It’s a gift to be able to share a visual of moments, details, people, places and things to those we love, so that they, too, can feel even a glimmer of the joy we feel when we reflect on those times. Family photos connect us to those who came before.
By letting your kids see your photos from the past and the present, they become connected to their own story. They know the family members and ancestors who came before them and helped shape the world and person they see today. Because as time moves on, it is the memories of loved ones we will cherish documenting the most. Family photos can manifest emotions that words cannot.
So I urge you, print your family photos and hang them in your home. Engage a professional photographer to document your memories on a regular basis as your children grow and change. Include your extended family too… after all it’s a great excuse to get the family together.