Definition of gratitude: the state of being grateful : thankfulness ( Merriam-Webster)

Nothing brings warmth to my heart than receiving a hand written note thanking me for something I have done, a wedding I had photographed or just a normal portrait that I had delivered a week earlier.  There is something about the written word that Facebook, Twitter or Instagram cannot convey.  It is the personal touch.  Someone took time and effort to sit down and reflect a little on what I did for them or with them. (as a side note, I have received many emails and warm wishes on the next part of my journey. For that I am very thankful to all of you)

This image was taken rather quickly and was more of a trial run than anything else.  I took the images, printed a handful of “proofs” and dropped them off in their mailbox. That evening I received a very kind text message with an invite for breakfast and a piece of art to choose from their house. In this case the art is just as personal as a written note. Again, gratitude.

Lastly, there is another way I enjoy witnessing gratitude. Tears. 

People see “photography” everyday online. Facebook and Instagram to name a select few. You can’t truly see the texture and depth in an image on a screen. Nor can you feel or touch a loved one’s image from your phone. Images are meant to be living things and are to be shared across a table or from one couch to another. 

The tangible print is as important as a hand written note. 

140 characters just are just that, characters. But a handwritten note can warm your heart and feed your soul. 

A screen capture of a photo is just that as well, just a bunch of pixels on a cold screen. But a tangible image on real photographic paper will be handed down for generations to come. You can feel, smell and interact with real prints and photographs with tears and laughter.  

Gratitude can be shown and given in many ways. Having you or your family photographed  by a photographer and ordering wall portraits and an album to give to your family as an heirloom. Home cooking for friends, an invitation for friends to join you in your home for nothing more than laughs and fun. Perhaps sending a favorite book to someone, a phone call or just a handwritten note. 

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