Why I’m Photo Obsessed

I can’t even begin to make a guess at how many photos I’ve taken in my lifetime. Thousands. Who knows. I’ve filled up countless CDs, an entire external hard-drive and I’ve already got a couple hundred on the new external I got for Christmas.

The photo-taking obsession started early, with my first camera being given to me as a birthday gift in (I think) 8th grade. This was pre-cell phone service in my town, so rather than having a cell phone on me 24/7, I had a camera.

A few years went by, digital photography changed drastically, and I got a new Sony Cybershot (again, for a birthday). Though the obsession died down slightly, I still managed to take hundreds and hundreds of photos.

Wiz Khalifa–2011 for The Penn

And I can’t lie, a few thousand of these were failed attempts at taking the perfect Myspace photo in high school.

When I met a photographer and became best friends with him in the beginning of college, I realized that taking photos didn’t have to be just something I did. It could be a part of my life. That’s when I purchased my DSLR and learned the real rules of photography.

I started working for my school’s newspaper as a photographer, and the obsession continued to grow. And getting paid for it wasn’t so bad, either.

Young the Giant, 2012 — taken for The Penn

Having your photo printed on paper gives you a rush. Especially the first time your photo is used as a cover photo. An even bigger rush? Standing between the crowd and a famous artist at a concert, being just inches away from that artist and feeling the crowd and it’s excitement, while shooting 800 shots in 20 minutes just to get three or four perfect photos.

IMG_20130302_005621

Bathroom picture — three days ago…

Now, though I don’t get the chance to actually shoot as often anymore, I still take photos daily with my phone. Sure some of them are still random pictures of myself in bathrooms, a picture of my new coffee mug (I did that today) and what I ate for dinner last night, but the point is– I can’t stop taking photos.

Why?

I think I’m afraid of forgetting.

I want to remember every single thing I did, whether it be that amazing concert I shot in college, the walk down Jackson Ave. I took with my friends in high school, or the outfit I wore that isn’t going to fit me when I’m 50.

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