Sun. Sleeping. Drinking. Eating. These are all things that I greatly enjoy doing in life. You may notice that they have a few things in common: namely that they are all part of the good life. Things I do not enjoy include: taking pictures in the cold, taking pictures at unpleasant times of day, taking pictures when I would rather be doing anything else, taking pictures… More observant readers may have noticed that there is a certain theme emerging among these pet peeves. My girlfriend has a blog, you see, this one in fact, and along with that all the social medias that you can imagine – being an Instagram girl among them.
And she likes Instagram… a lot.
I get the appeal: taking photos of things and sharing it with strangers for external validation. Is that it? No, ok maybe Instagram is a strange land for me. A mysterious platform where people share amazing vistas that take your breath away but also share blurry pics of their latest meals. To be honest the whole thing makes me feel like an old man. I missed the boat on this one and am now left on the shore of ignorance wondering what those damn kids are doing with their selfies and their *grumble grumble*…
Aleksandra loves to post pictures of anything and everything (and I do mean everything): cats, herself, food, buildings, cute things. Well, it is mainly cute things. But she has this need inside her to post different pictures which involves taking pictures. A lot of them. All the time. It never stops. Pictures. Pictures. Oh God, please make it stop. Send help.
I exaggerate a little, but there are many pictures taken and, being the kind and generous epitome of manhood that I am (sometimes), I often ‘volunteer’ to help. Sometimes I am strong-armed into helping, true, but I do genuinely volunteer on occasion.
Becoming an expert. Sort of.
It’s not all doom and gloom taking pictures and helping with it all. There are even some advantages, shocking as it sounds after all my moaning. Taking so many photos has really improved my photography skills from zero to my now over-inflated ego hero. It is a very enjoyable pastime and you can improve quickly. Of course, this means that when I take pictures I lean 35° back and frame all my pictures with my hands like a pro. I’m about 2 months from taking my own lighting with me wherever I go. Hopefully shame will stop me from going too far down this rabbit hole.
Taking all the glory
It occurred to me as I wrote all this that I make it sound like I take all Aleksandra’s pictures. While this is true for the ones of her (obviously) I must confess that not all the rest are mine. I mean, I could take credit for them and no one would be any the wiser. So, I should make it clear: only the prettiest ones are mine. There I’ve said it.
We’ve always tended to hoard things. Which is why our house is full of old Vogues, tickets, paints and memories. Which is why it is great to have so many pictures stored on my computer. It ensures that no matter what happens to me I will always have a crazy amount of memories of that cat I saw down the street that one time. And of Aleksandra posing in a hundred different Instagram girl poses. Often with a hundred photos of her laughing in-between!
It sounds kind of lame (and it is!) but I love to have all these little memories of tiny events in our lives that will be forever immortalised in a photograph that I can look back on in twenty years and remember what was happening and the emotions I felt. And Aleksandra being an Instagram girl made all these pictures possible, because otherwise I would never have all these treasures.
This paragraph is not the most macho I have ever written.
Plus, if someone broke into my house I’d have plenty of proof of all the stuff I own! Though the police may wonder why on earth I have documented all the Vogues, candles and chopping boards we own. Some would argue that this advantage is a bit of a stretch and unlikely to ever be useful. But to that I say:
All these photographs are also great alibis if I ever am falsely accused of a crime. Yes. They are all date stamped so I will have absolute proof of where I was at a whole bunch of times…That last one just makes me sounds suspicious and guilty, even to myself.
Cats. My guilty pleasure
Easily the greatest advantage of all this Instagramming is that I interact with approximately ten thousand percent more cats than I otherwise would do. Luckily Aleksandra has a rather magical ability to attract cats (future crazy cat lady perhaps?) so finding them is easy. We happen to live an area that is full of cats, and strangely empty of people. It is all rather mysterious. Perhaps some cat-conspiracy? Who knows. I’m certainly not complaining.
Every cat met on the road is the unwitting star of the next post. Perhaps it could be you next? Don’t worry, your secret is safe, on the internet no one knows you are a cat.
Raining on my parade
Anything fun can be very quickly ruined by rain. Trust me, I’m English. Taking photos outdoors of anything at all quickly becomes an exercise in hating life and blowing every little problem we have with each other wildly out of proportion. I truly believe that taking pictures in rainy times is responsible for half of all our arguments. (The other half is, of course, her fault.)
We live by a canal which is extremely beautiful when the sun is shining and the ducks are out but quickly becomes a hellish quagmire as soon as the heavens open. It is normally at these moments that Aleksandra decides that taking a picture that involves kneeling in the mud is absolutely a great idea at this exact moment. Patience is a virtue.
Taking pictures in the rain is always a lot quicker to get done though. There is that. Apparently, we respond better to the stick than the carrot!
I have discovered that I have a great talent for taking pictures about 0.5milliseconds after a nice smile of my own Instagram girl, cat-stretch, wind blowing leaves past or whatever beautiful scene could be captured. I am, however, damn good at capturing the ugly side of life. Such a pity that I don’t intend it.
I suppose it could all come in handy if I ever want to display an art installation of people blinking, sneezing and generally looking not ready for their close-up.
Let’s just all give a warm hug to my boyfriend, who wrote this little piece and shot all the pictures above in my time of dire need. Hopefully I’ll see you again next week!