Chaitanya

Documenting for others

2021-02-13

I have always hesitated to get photographed alone or with friends and family. One half of the reason was my dislike for my appearance. The other half insisted that living in the moment and making memories was more important than material photographs for mere remembrance. I told myself that getting clicked would reduce the time spent on actually enjoying the moment. So far, I cannot say if this has been true or not. We don’t relish all moments equally and given that I have not documented these moments in text or photographs, I can’t even look back to find out if this holds or not. Moreover, I cannot trust my memories as they have been degraded mainly by my imagination and bias.

While watching a short video documentary on BBC Reel, I realised that taking photographs is not really for keeping things to oneself. It is to document for those around us. Time is always flowing forwards. Hence, if we do not document today, we would not be able to understand things once they vanish away. Many things have disappeared over the past few years. Many more seem to be on a rapid decline in our culture and our environment.

Equally but at a smaller scale, if I decline to get clicked with my parents today on our trip, what would they have to show or look at when I am no longer living with them in the same city. Of course, we can video call at any point in time, but that will not always be an option.

I have decided to get clicked at every opportunity that presents itself and click wherever I can for others and document things around where I am present at that moment. I always complain about the disastrous changes that the local government bodies have been bringing in Chandigarh to gain more revenue and better rankings in union government’s schemes. If I photograph things before more changes occur, maybe I will be able to share it with those who would never see the city as beautiful as it was before, is today, but would not be in the future.


This post is Day 009 of my #100DaysToOffload challenge.