In today’s single-serving, instant lifestyles, Lomography continues to teach us on how be patient, and on how to delay gratification.
Much of the things we have nowadays come to us at an instant; instant coffee, instant noodles, instant projects, instant photographs. So much so, that the words “patience” or “waiting” have become increasingly low register words. Although, we do appreciate the convenience that advancement in technology as afforded us, it is also important for us to be reminded of other human values, such as delaying gratification. Even the psychologist Sigmund Freud was particular in pointing out that our Ego or Self should be able to control our Id, which continues to seek out immediate pleasures.
Lomography and analogue photography in general still continues to impart to us this important lesson in life. That is, good things come to those who wait. While digital photography lets you view a photograph in an instant, analogue photography forces you to wait and be patient. It will not pamper you in a way digital photography does. As you round up your roll of film, and as you wait for it to be developed, printed or scanned, tension builds up. And, when you finally see the photos, that feeling is just priceless. The tension you have bottle up for quite a while is released, and erupts into what one might describe as ecstasy! More than the elation from your wonderful photographs, the feeling is amplified a hundred fold, because you delayed your gratification.
Here in the Philippines, we take the delaying in a whole new level. Not only do we wait for a roll of film, some of us wait until we finish five rolls! In the interest of saving money, some of us here, take advantage of a photo lab’s promo of developing and scanning films for less if you have more than one roll to be processed. After leaving the rolls at the photo lab, we still would have to wait for five day, before the scans are delivered to our doorsteps.
In an even higher order of delay is a project, which I am currently a part of, “While We Wait”. This endeavor involves shooting for twelve months, and processing the photos a year after the project has started! Now this will surely test your patience.
This lesson extends beyond the realms of analogue photography, and into our very own lives. Beautiful things will come our way; perhaps not as immediately as we wish them to. And when they finally do so, all that waiting and delay would have been worth it; making you more appreciative of your countless blessings.