The Camera Phone Devolution

Today I had a rather profound epiphany.

It was while watching my 6 year old son’s (Leo’s) end of term service. It was held in the fantastic grounds of Doune Castle, the courtyard was filled with the entire school and all the parents, bagpipes played us in and the whole environment created a great atmosphere.

About half an hour into the service Leo stood up to say a little about his first year at school, meanwhile I rushed to get my phone out an record his little speech. By the time I had set up the phone, zoomed in and hit record, he had all but finished. I missed the full thing and all I had to show for it was a grainy video with the sound of wind whistling through the phone’s mic.

Instead of listening and enjoying the experience there and then I sacrificed that memory for the ability to relive the moment…… Whats worth more, the undiluted memory of any given moment or the tarnished result of faffing around in an effort to relive something that you will probably never watch or listen to more than once anyway!

Maybe this trend bugs me more than most as often while im performing someone will whip out a phone and start recording the performance.

Now the obvious downfall to this is the fact that magic is mainly about directing attention and given the chance to watch the same performance over and over the secret will eventually show, but this isnt what bugs me most.

Those who watch my work on the other side of the phone screen while worrying about keeping everything in frame and in focus and maybe reading the odd notification that comes through, are missing the most important aspect of what im doing, THE CONNECTION. Trust me you will enjoy it infinitely more if you put the phone away and enjoy the here and now. Sure you wont have that shaky video of on out of context performance to show your friends but you will have the memory and experience to share vocally, conveyed with the emotion and excitement you felt at the time. That is something you can use and hopefully cherish.

Now dont get me wrong sometimes having that camera to hand is a great but its not the answer all the time, try and living in the now, for me, at least its something I will aspire to do more of.

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