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Are You Going to be an Observer or Participant this Holiday Season? {Guest Post}

I am so guilty of this, but all the while looking at a beautiful view, or a pretty flower, or sure—people I know and love—I’m thinking about how I wish I could take a picture of the moment, and capture it forever.

Being in the moment is easier said that done. I regret occasions where I didn’t think to bring my camera, as I will not be able to look back at the moment later to remember it. The thing is, though—I always do remember it, regardless of the pictures taken or not. One of my favourite movies is Two Days in Paris, starring and directed by Julie Delpy. Here is a quote from the movie, where she is talking about how her boyfriend has essentially spent the entire trip taking pictures:

Taking pictures all the time turns you into an observer.
It will traumatically take you out of the moment.
– Marion

What do you think? Do you agree that you can only be in the moment if you withhold from taking pictures?

If you’re going to be taking pictures this holiday season, I have a bit of advice on how to capture the memories and stay in the moment at the same time.

You know those posed pictures with grandparents in the front on chairs, with children at their feet and adults standing behind in a big group? Forgo those! I am the victim of having had those types of photos taken at every single family get-together since I was born. There are dozens of those pictures floating around, where you know everyone had to stop what they were doing (actually enjoying themselves and spending time with their loved ones) and stand around a sofa or set of chairs to put on a good-enough-for-the-camera smile for several takes.

Instead, remember to take candid pictures of people in the action, laughing, smiling naturally—doing typical stuff people would do around the holidays. Don’t forget to have someone take pictures of you as well, because you don’t want to miss out on being in one of the captured memories/have proof that you were there. People change the way they act when cameras are around, so try to be discrete and not have the entire event be a picture-taking party of sorts.

Do you have any advice on how to live in the moment despite being camera-happy?

Thanks to Tazim for guest posting!

Tazim Damji is a huge picture-taker who writes the home décor, DIY, and lifestyle blog She lives in beautiful Vancouver Canada.