As an experienced wedding photographer in Shropshire, I was asked to chat with Mark Elliott on BBC Radio Shropshire. There’s a great discussion surrounding an iconic photograph at the MBA when LeBron James broke a career record in scoring. The debate from this historic moment surrounds a photograph taken by Andrew D. Bernstein. It tells a story in seconds.

I have assumed most of the people are filming the action because of the way they are holding their phones. It is a very telling photograph of our society and how we constantly record the world around us. It is reported that some of the spectators paid as much as $75,000 for a seat. We can’t be surprised that they wanted to capture that record breaking shot.

It’s a remarkable testament to the immense popularity of the iPhone and how much has changed in the 20 years since LeBron entered the league. Back in 2003, the iPhone didn’t even exist, and the first model that came out in 2007 had a 2MP camera that couldn’t even take videos. Now the iPhone is a tool for capturing history as it unfolds.

Author: Michael Simon, Executive Editor – Macworld

Mark and I discussed the use of mobile phones, as a Wedding Photographer in Shropshire and my experience of that as a professional. The day of unplugged weddings may be over but there is an awareness amongst guests to enjoy the moment rather than try and document it, especially since the bride and groom have invested in film makers and photographers to do this.

Our obsession with documenting every experience is still really relevant, we see it and partake in this ourselves. I am as guilty as anyone and need to remind myself sometimes that it really isn’t necessary! How we preserve our memories has changed with technology and is impacted as a result. 

The fans’ memory of the moment may well be different had they not been experiencing it though their phones. They’ll never forget the moment  because they have their own recorded version (how many times they will actually view it is another thing, or if it gets lost on an upgrade) The way they remember it and how they share the memory will also be different. The experience will likely be shared via a phone rather than through verbal communication and surely all of that changes our emotional response to something we saw first hand, our perception of the event and how we interacted with other people. 

This photograph is one I took whilst working in Santorini. We went to watch the sunset but couldn’t get close due to the number of mobile phones being held up. I watched for a few moments through someones screen, took this shot on my camera and we left. It just wouldn’t have been the moment it should have been.

So long as we have the technology to document moments like these, there will always be a debate. Is it better to live in the moment and see history in the making? OR will we always feel compelled to record everything and share it with the world? The way we share stories is changing, we have come a long way since the cave.

This photograph is a wonderful reminder about being present. Reminding us to interact with people in the world and enjoy the way a memory feels.