Photography and its Role in Environmental Awareness
Our world is beset by environmental problems because of man’s continuous quest for modernization. In our ardent zeal to do more in a shorter period of time, we’re depleting the natural resources that our planet has to offer faster than Mother Nature can replenish them, and because of this, we’re facing intense climate changes, global warming that’s melting the icebergs faster than ever before, and holes in the ozone layer that are contributing to an increase in pollution and toxicity in the places we live.
If it’s true that a picture is worth a thousand words, then we all must agree that a photo that captures the essence of its subject is of more use than the most loquacious of essays about the same subject. And what better use for photos than to increase awareness of the earth’s plight and get more people to realize that we have to act immediately if we wish to provide our future generations with a non-hostile planet to live on. So here goes, a list of reasons why photographs are ideal as a medium to enhance awareness about the need for eco-friendly measures:
· Photos produce a wow effect: If you’re shown a picture of whales being slaughtered, of the destruction wreaked by a typhoon that’s extremely powerful, of the ravages wrought on a rainforest by illegal loggers and poachers, or of animals driven to extinction because of the loss of their natural habitats, you’re likely to take more notice of their cause. The same effect can never be achieved with words or their equivalent.
· Photos provide lasting memories: Just as we don’t remember an earth that was teeming with wildlife and rich in natural resources, our children and their children will know how much destruction one generation can cause only when they see photographs of the earth shot a few decades ago. Photos serve to remind us of what we have destroyed and to warn future generations to preserve what they do have in a wise manner.
· Photos show us how much we stand to lose: Before and after pictures are extremely effective in educating people about the adverse effects of deforestation, global warming and other environmental dangers to our world. They’re the next best thing to actually being on location and witnessing firsthand the kind of damage we are knowingly wreaking on our planet.
· Photos are understood even by children: The future generations need to wake up to the fact that they may not have a world to live in if they’re careless and ignorant about the environment. Since photographs portray the entire story in a way that even children can understand, they realize the importance of doing all they can to protect and save what’s left of the earth’s environment.
This article is contributed by Sarah Scrafford, who regularly writes on the topic of Associate Degree in Photography. She invites your questions, comments and freelancing job inquiries at her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.