I want to capture the moment, the real, raw emotions and all. Documentary photography does just that!
“Documentary photography usually refers to a popular form of photography used to chronicle both significant and relevant to history and historical events and everyday life. It is typically covered in professional photojournalism, or real life reportage, but it may also be an amateur, artistic, or academic pursuit. The photographer attempts to produce truthful, objective, and usually candid photography of a particular subject, most often pictures of people.”
An interest I have naturally is to people watch. I like seeing relationships between people, mostly of those who I find something in common or relate to. In all honesty, I could sit for hours and watch people. It is one reason why I have a degree in anthropology. The other reason is I love archaeology. Nothing like digging up and seeing the past to make me happy. Maybe that is why I always want to go to a museum. There I can people watch and see history.
Anyway, if it was possible I would go back in time to do anthropological research on Ancient Egyptians, Easter Island inhabitants and most of the time periods in Europe. With a camera. I love writing and documenting the everyday in a journal, but photos convey more than I ever can. You see un-posed, raw, real interaction and emotions. You see them as they are, their personality.
That is what I love. With documentary photography I will not only see and remember how everyone looked, I will also see how they felt, and their personality. It is a great thing.
Also, one thing I have notice with these types of photos is I find that in a posed photo if I don’t like how I look or what I am wearing I get frustrated and annoyed. That is what I focus on and want to throw out the photo. However, I have tons of photos of me in the moment and I could careless about what I am wearing or how I looked because I am more interested in remembering how I felt and what was happening. Who doesn’t want to feel like that when you look back at photos? Isn’t that also the point of the photograph?
I highly recommend this style of photography. It lets you take photos as is, without worry of being technical or not. They do not have to be perfect, they really just have to put a smile on the person’s face who is looking at this small moment in time.
A great reference site is Framed and Fearless (see this post for more info on documentart vs lifestyle) hosted by Marie Masse.