What Time Is It?
There has been noise recently in the photo news about an email exchange that writer and Wired Magazine Editor-in-Chief, Chris Anderson, had with a hapless photographer who had sent Anderson a promo piece using bulk email from a purchased list. Anderson blasted back, accusing the shooter of being a time waster and practicing lazy marketing, indicating that all future emails would be blocked.
I’ve managed to block a few emails myself including some with anatomical references, those from an ex-employee of a couple years back and irritating emails from my cousin’s wife but until now have just accepted that a few hours everyday will get wasted sorting through unsolicited emails
I assumed Anderson’s retort was a typical Silicon Valley arrogant and aggressive response until I read an article about Anderson hero, Timothy Ferris. Ferris has
written a book called The 4 Hour Work Week. One of the means to a shorter workweek and more time for fun, he says, is to overcome email addiction and information overload. (So didn't we all know that already?)
With 147 RSS feeds streaming into my computer daily, two email accounts, blogs, IM and the occasional phone call from my 86 year old Aunt Rita trying to get me to email my cousin’s wife, I hardly have time for what used to be called work.
All this has me thinking about one of the timeless concepts in stock imagery: and that is ‘time’ itself. Today ‘time’ is a more important visual concept than ever as it is become both a driving force and a luxury that few can afford to enjoy (waste?).
Like most concepts, it is easy to fall back on clichés. Don’t get me wrong: clichés sell but sometimes its good to push images beyond the obvious. It’s simple to see the literal ways to illustrate the following: Time flies. Running out of time. Time to leave. Time out. Time’s up. Time is money. Time wasted. Frozen in time. Flowing through time. Passage of time. Can you take these phrases one step beyond the obvious and create fresh images for overused phrases?
There are other words that bring up some interesting ‘time’ images too. Sometimes the only time we are aware of time is when we are alone or rushed. Boredom comes from too much time on one’s hands. Images of waiting are really about time. And every image that you take captures a moment in time that will never be repeated.
As for me, I’m out of time, as I have to read my emails, check my RSS reader, listen to my voice mail on two lines and take a time out.
Time saving and capturing time with images:
Ferriss has a blog here.
HisbookonAmazon: 4 Hour Work Week
An interesting experiment in capturing time every hour in words and photographs here.