Important Photos for Life

The last few weeks at work have been quite thought provoking.

You see, I make part of my living restoring photos. In the last several weeks I have had the unfortunate job of working on a number of photos of people that have recently died.

Relatives of the recently deceased bring in their snapshots (some crinkled and in ruins) and want a finished portrait produced from their crinkled, blurry, faded snapshot. It’s hard to believe that these images are the best photos that they have of their loved ones.

Although, through modern digital imaging techniques, we are actually able to produce a decent “portrait” from these snapshots, I can’t help but think how nice it would have been if someone in the family had actually taken some decent pictures of their loved one while they were still alive.

Pictures of family, friends and special family events are what truly lives on in our personal histories. So, while we are all out photographing for stock, art, or whatever, let’s not forget to photograph what really matters, our family, our friends.

And, just because we find ourselves behind the camera most of the time taking the pictures, let’s not forget to get out in front of it once in a while so we have some decent images of ourselves to include in our own personal and family histories.

By the way, I love this photo. It made me smile. A wonderful natural shot to remember a point in time in a family's life.

Photo credits: Jason Schulz.

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January 21, 2008


Thanks! I have restored photos, too, and I totally agree. My wife (in the picture) has a scrapbooking business and preserves memories for people so I don't have to restore them. As a side note, if you are using digital media, make sure you have redundant backup systems (like a CD AND external hard drive. Nothing is sadder than someone spening thousands of dollars trying to extract lost images from a crashed hard drive.

In my case, I get to shoot stock AND preserve memories.... ;)

January 20, 2008


Very good article. I am always taking family pictures and I am never in them. Thank you for the great article.

January 18, 2008


It's funny you comment about being behind the camera all the time. My husband and I occasionally joke about how weird it's going to be when we're old and sitting on our front porch rocking in the rockers. We'll be looking back through all our photos reminescing of times gone by and all the fun we had. However we won't be able to remember what I looked like through the years because I'm not in any of the photos! We do get wrapped up in capturing the moments of others that we forget that we are part of the moments, too. We just need to make it a point to remember to get in FRONT of the camera once in awhile. Like you said above, what if something happened to us? What would our family and friends have to remember us by in the way of visual reminders? Thanks for this great post.

January 18, 2008


So true... family seems like an obvious subject for photographs but I tend to neglect it except for the small children. A good reminder!

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