We've lost the magic of opening that pack of photographs fresh from the printers and we're quickly forgetting to view our quick-fire efforts that are simply sitting on devices, waiting to be seen again. Hidden Gems champion the printed photo and encourages the smartphone-savvy generation to bring their photographs from cyberspace into physical space.
Countless photos are stuffing up image galleries. You name it, social media, photo-storage websites, hard-drives, CDs, phones, desktops or tablets. None of these are permanent keep-safe solutions. Either by intention or accidental loss, photos are at risk of never being seen again. We're becoming saturated with images in the digital world and Hidden Gems wants to promote something tangible, something iconic.
It’s a sad time to reflect back and realise that photos don’t flourish under the benevolent eye of a film camera anymore. Getting photos developed before meant waiting for a few days, but when people were reunited with the results, it was like unwrapping a present to see all 24 prints together.
Generation Y-ers will never know what it was like when the family brought out the box of embarrassing photos, all those happy accidents and the imperfections that came with not being able to look back instantly at what was taken.
Instead, their lives are photographed, filmed, documented, tracked by geo-location and then published online. They’ve bypassed a time when the printed photograph was cherished. So Hidden Gems highlights this change in a tangible solution as a 42-page book and is encouraging people to print their digital photos at their pop-up spaces around the UK.
Millennials are riding the wave for nostalgic hype, enjoying remixes, remakes, reissues and looking at things in retrospect so Hidden Gems is a fusion of printing, something that’s seen as old in their minds, but is promoted in a contemporary fashion. We're all storytellers and the way we tell those stories is through photos. So, why don't be share something? Hidden Gems believes printing our photos allows us to spark conversation, something we can keepsafe in our wallets, proudly place on our walls or mantelpieces or even attach to our fridge door for all to see. It's something the digital photo can't do.
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© Charlotte Allen 2016.
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