Gillian Rose, an Open University professor , conducted research investigating why family snaps are still significant in the digital age . She suggests ‘in many ways digital photography allows people to do what they want to do with family snaps more easily , more often , and more extensively’ (Rose 2013)
Her initial research was conducted in 2000 and only one of her interviewees (who were all female with children) had access to a computer and all used analogue cameras . The second interviews were conducted between 2006-8 by which time the majority owned a digital camera and all had a computer at home.
Rose suspects ‘ that a really significant transition in family photography—one which will articulate changed subjectivities and a different relation to digital images is likely to take place in another decade , when todays teenagers who use social networking sites as a central part of their social relations and representations of self become parents in their turn’ ( Rose 2016 p.p 129)
Doing Family Photography. The Domestic ,The Public and The Politics of Sentiment .
– Family photographs are no longer static but are circulated around the globe. ‘A large part of what is ordinarily done with family photographs…..is about making them mobile’ (p.p59)
– Family photographs function as a means of ‘maintaining familial togetherness’ (p.p 59) when living distances apart.
– Charity organisations use personal family photographs to publicise their work Missing People is a charity organisation , their website HERE has Search Directory that one can use to search for missing people. On the 24th May 2007 ,which was International Missing Children’s Day, images of missing children were projected on to Marble Arch.
– Newspapers publish family photographs of missing children and victims of atrocities.
– Family photographs are shared digitally via email and Rose comments ‘ the family snap changes somewhat when it is emailed’ (p.p 64) , they are used as a form of communication and connectivity. However emailed images are not often printed and more importantly frequently deleted , ‘it is less the photo’s themselves that matter when they are circulated as messages , and more the connection they are intended to signify’ (p.p 67)
– ‘ Participating in email exchanges strips family snaps of much of the destiny of memory ….they are not sent primarily as a truthful record of a happy moment…their indexicality , in fact , is no longer key’ (p.p 68)
– Family photographs are increasingly being circulated by family members into the public sphere following disasters.
How Digital Technologies Do Family Snaps , Only better
– Rose suggests rather than reconstructing family photography digital technology has augmented it.
– All her interviewees took numerous snaps , they felt it crucial ‘to take photographs of their family members and in particular of their children’ (p.p 79)
– The mothers Rose interviewed felt it crucial to correctly date , store and organise their images ‘and with digital photography , all these things are remarkably easy to do’ (p.p 81
– Social media sites enable easy sharing of snaps with family
+ See my notes HERE : van Dijck , J. (2008) . “Digital photography:communication , identity , memory” . Visual Communication , 7(1) 57-76
References / Bibliography
Rose,G. (2016) Doing Family Photography. Oxford:Routledge
Rose G . 2013. In Larsen , J. and Sandbye , M . (eds.) “How Digital Technologies Do Family Snaps , Only Better” Digital Snaps The New Face of Photography . London :I.B. Tauris p.p 67-84.