We celebrated a milestone birthday in our family this weekend. It was epic. We all took LOADS of pictures and eagerly shared them with each other across various digital platforms, congratulating ourselves on the precious moments we'd captured.
It wasn't until Sunday evening, as I was mindlessly scrolling through social media, that I came across an article that got me really thinking. You can read it here. Vinton Cerf, an internet pioneer, and big chief at Google, has warned that its time to start printing out the vast quantities of digital data we produce or risk loosing it forever. He warns that future generations will struggle to understand our society because technology is progressing so fast, old files will become inaccessible.
I take for granted being able to look through my granny's old photograph albums whilst Mum tells me who all the people are (just like her Mum told her - and I will tell my daughter). Its exactly why I produce a family photo-book each year too. And its not just the beautifully posed shots that get put in... its the quick phone snaps too that I want to remember.
Our generation feels that if we digitalise our precious photographs, it will preserve them for ever and we can access them whenever we choose. In fact, quite the opposite is true. Mr Cert says unless companies like his take further steps, technology will move so fast that out only option will be the information we've printed and precious digital images, documents and records will be lost forever. Just think about the info you used on a floppy disk a few years ago... how could you access that now?
Most of my clients are keen to have their photographs from our sessions digitally on a USB, and I understand why - its useful to have them all easily accessible on your computer to email to Granny or post on Facebook. BUT, all my packages contain prints of some kind as I strongly believe we all need to print the photographs we want to preserve.
Louisa Williams is a family portrait photographer based near Newmarket in Suffolk, covering Cambridge, Bury St Edmunds and the surrounding areas. You can see more of her current work and enquire about commissions here and can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.