As we approach Fathers’ Day, I am reminded of the importance of sharing photos. Let me just say that I am one of the worst in this category - in the “old” film days, I often had images sitting in the camera for six months to a year, sometimes longer, before I took the roll to the corner drugstore for developing. It was not uncommon to see photos in July of a prior Christmas family gathering. Now with the digital era, there is no excuse for such procrastination. It is easier to share images, especially with e-mail, social media like Facebook; and photo sharing sites like Flickr, Picasa and a host of others. But, you still have to get the photos out of the digital device and into the eyes and hands of friends and family.
To illustrate the importance of sharing, last year I attended the Mothers’ Day Brunch held by the Roselle American Legion Auxiliary. As usual, I had my point-and-shoot with me, so I just started taking photos of the attendees. By now, the Legion Family is used to me and my cameras, and eventually I do share the images on a display board at the Legion Hall, so people are always willing and eager to pose or be captured in candid moments.
My good friend Jerri Anne was there with her Stepfather Gil, his grandson Jonathan and wife Amanda and their children Madeline and Lillian; all of whom had come from out of town for a special Mothers’ Day gathering. Jerri asked if I would take a photo of the group, and later I printed and sent her a few of “the best.” They were not studio quality, not the greatest photos in the world. They were basically snapshots for the family album. But it was an important gathering and a tender moment. That is what made the photos so special. As it turns out, that would be the last Mothers’ Day gathering for the family. Sadly, Gil passed away last December. When Jerri called to give me the news, and ask if I had any photos of Gil for the Memorial Service, I was pleased and honored to send the digital copies over to the funeral home.
Somehow it is easier to talk about the passing of someone else’s father, and the story of Gil is still fresh in memory. My own father, Bruce Walthers passed away in 2007, and my father-in-law John C Barsanti passed away in 1989. I will be thinking of both of them on this coming Fathers’ Day. As you celebrate with your families and fathers, get out your digital devices and take a few photos of them. Whether it is with a point-and-shoot, an SLR, or a cellphone; take those photos. Process them, print them, share them.