We took a lot of photos while in Australia. A lot. I must have shot about 400 frames throughout the trip, most of them of my kids having fun. But a few of them were of fairly tourist-y spots: the train station in Melbourne, the Syndey Harbor Bridge and Opera House, nice landscapes at various surfing spots. And I found myself wondering aloud at some points just why it was I was taking these pictures. I mean surely, there are better ones that I could find on Flickr. Why shouldn’t I just use those to capture my memories?

Case in point, this picture here that I took of Bell’s Beach, one of the top surfing spots on the South Australia Coast. Beautiful place. Kinda ok picture. Look on Flickr and what do you find? Over 1,100 photos tagged with “bells_beach” and probably twice that many in the database that aren’t as easy to find. And even on the first page of results are a couple that I find much more appealing than my own. Now even though “all rights are reserved” on these, I can still find almost 100 that have a Creative Commons license, and many are the exact same angle, exact same shot. Most importantly, there are some that are as good if not better than mine.

So the question is, why take pictures of places that you visit that probably aren’t going to be as good as the photos that others have already taken that are already available for you to use in your own albums, slide shows, whatever? I mean, unless you want to organize the wife and kids in front of the spot just to prove you’ve been there, what’s the point?

Just a question…

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