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Monday 18 April 2016

Life Without Technology Is Not As Bad As It Seems, And These Photographs Prove It

Life Without Technology Is Not As Bad As It Seems, And These Photographs Prove It

 Imagining a world without technology is hard for any millennial.
No cell phones, no television, no computer... In this day and age, it’s almost unfathomable. But what if you grew up without the luxury of these items? Would you still be happy? Is there a chance you may be even happier than what you are now?
Well, these children don’t appear hard done by one bit. 

Niki Boon believes that life is about the simple things…

… like being outdoors, tending to animals, and spending time with family. That is why the photographer from New Zealand began the photo series Childhood in the Raw. The photographs capture her children’s technology-free life. 

Boon discovered her passion for photography while living abroad.

"My initiation into photography started whilst working as a physiotherapist through a particularly dreary winter in Scotland, where I took a darkroom course for something to do in the dark evenings and weekends,” she told National Geographic. “The appeal for me was instant, as I fell in love with the magic of both the art and the science of the picture-making process from start to finish.”

Now, she uses that passion to document her children's coming of age.

Boon has two boys and two girls. The family lives on a large ten-acre lot where they are homeschooled. Playing and exploring are just as much of a learning tool as textbooks and reading material for the youngsters. The children have been living without technology for the past  three years. 

Most children could not dream of a life without modern technology.

To anyone who has grown up with technology, the lifestyle that Boon's children live sounds like a deprived upbringing. But for these children, it is all they have ever known. 
It doesn't look like they feel they are missing out on much. They seem carefree, blissful, and happy.  

Boon's photos capture the true essence of childhood.

“My dream is for viewers to be moved by my images in some way," she told National Geographic. "I don’t necessarily desire that everyone like my images, or even understand them; I just want them to feel a little, to see the honesty, the reality, the rawness, the truth in those that I photograph, the life they live, and the wonder and depth in their every day — the beauty in the ordinary."

"I hope that although my images are deeply personal...

... others can connect to some part of their own childhood through them.”
On their birthday, each child is gifted with a photo album containing pictures their mother has taken throughout that year.

What is so compelling about Boon's photos is the honesty behind them.

The photos are not posed or staged. They are snapshots of her children simply enjoying life in a carefree blissful state.
Boon's mother died when she was very young. The passing of her mother made her realize the personal value of a memory captured in the form of a six-by-four photograph. 

In a way, the photographs are for both Boon and her children.

"It is my passion to record as much as I can of my children’s day-to-day lives, as well as their adventures, in the most meaningful pictures I can take … their stories, our stories, and a piece of me. They’re for them to enjoy and relive for years to come.”
Main and collage image via Instagram / @nikiboonphoto

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