Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Photo Vs Video

I have a conundrum. My big trip (it involves a boat ...) is over a month away and although I have a zillion things to think about for it, one item appears to be fogging my brain: should I take photos or a video of my amazing holiday.

Photography or videography?

This is a new issue, brand new in fact from the weekend, I am a photo person, I love photos, I make photo books, I print out photos and frame them, I regularly look back on photos – they make me happy!

But at the weekend I watched a friend's DVD of her trip to the West coast of America some years ago. It was fascinating, we watched on as she and her boyfriend escorted us around Las Vegas, gambled, took shots at Osama Bin Laden (his photo) and we jumped when a lightening bolt appeared on screen as they flew over the Grand Canyon! We awwed as they drove their swanky convertible up the coast, as they examined the interior of Alcatraz at San Fransisco and we laughed about how young the looked.

Despite my array of photos from a similar trip in 2008, they seemed quite inadequate, we certainly didn't show off Vegas like they did, The Grand Canyon looked pathetic, we had just glimpses of the vacation – while they had the full story.

Does video capture more?

Does video kick photo's ass?
In this instance it certainly did. But yet I struggle.

I look back on my photos from that trip regularly (they are in a photo book ...) would I do so with a video? – certainly not.
Photos can be more artistic, more flexible in terms of use but they do not show the full impact. Video can capture sound, more expressions, vastness, depth and you are probably more likely to capture the perfect picture, moment from a constant video than a lucky photo shot.

A Tasmania Devil aggressively feeding on a tail - this would have been more entertaining as a video.
(c) fifiheavey
Yet you will not stop the DVD player to tell a story, you will with a photo, it deserves more dialog – an explanation, some context – what happened next.
Maybe it is time to move with technology – take my photos from the footage filmed – become a youtube sensation ...

Even when taking photos I usually take a few minutess out in places of true inspiration to stare without a camera lens, to trace the image or the scene into my memory, to savor the feeling. Would I be too busy filming to do this, would it take away from the moment?

Still artistic image or fast paced footage? That is the question.
What is the answer?
Maybe a little bit of both?

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