Sunday, 7 December 2014

A Picture Paints a Thousand Words

Tumblr inspires me. It is the thing that sparked the motivation for me to sit down and write this post. I understand that the countless photos that fly past in a blur of colours can get a little tedious and may even cause painful cramps in your finger from the endless scrolling but there’s just something about it. A message, a lesson and perhaps an odd sense of hope bubbles inside and creates something inextinguishable.

I find it immensely beautiful that each photo means something different to each individual. I only really noticed it recently but a single picture can create a thousand stories in your head. It visualises your idea of what may have been happening at the time. It radiates the raw emotions that may have been felt. What happened before and after the photo was taken? Did that cute couple get their happy ending? It really makes you think.  

What’s laughable about this idea is that your interpretation of the people or the setting in the photo is most likely to be wrong. And it almost seems like you’re betraying the people who took the photo and almost invading the moment they captured. But the beauty of it is that your analysis is just as valid. The story you get from one image says more about you than what the photographer wanted to say initially. And there’s nothing wrong with that and we sure as hell shouldn’t feel guilty about it.

Source: here
Edited by Nabsticle

For example, this photo to me conveys an elderly couple who have retired and the map brings nostalgia about all the wonderful countries they’ve visited. What does it mean for you?

It’s the ideal source of inspiration for writers, artists, poets, musicians, philosophers. It’s the ideal source of inspiration for humans of any age, class and ability. Next time you’re flicking through old photo albums and you’re wistfully reminiscing your childhood I want you to remember the moment as if it was only yesterday. That photo of you sprawled on the floor laughing hysterically at something your best friend said means so much more to you than anyone else, regardless of it being a good or bad memory. But for others it can mean something completely different and maybe to them it’s not so significant.

I find that being an English student is the perfect way of expressing this. Yes we’re told to over analyse and practically destroy something to shreds just to connote some kind of logical meaning but everyone’s idea of a text is different. To me that’s simply fascinating.

I’m sorry if this seems like a tangled mess of rambling thoughts but it seemed important to share. A picture paints a thousand words, or it may only paint a few, but that’s up to you. We have individual opinions and have the power to think differently which is the reason that the world is still spinning.

Capture a moment and cherish the unique meaning and profound joy you get from it, but also feel the emotions from another photo and feel inspired. Be able to ignite your own story from just a spontaneous split second moment. The power of a single photograph is incredible.


  1. An absolute killer of a post girl - particularly loving the sentence, "The story you get from one image says more about you than what the photographer wanted to say initially.". Keep it up!!! Lauryn xo

    1. So glad you liked it Lauryn, that's great to hear coming from such a talented writer like yourself, thank you! xx