Deanna is a digital designer at Shutterstock with a passion for typography, layout, branding, curation and education. This post was originally published on the Shutterstock blog and has been reprinted with permission.


In a technology obsessed industry, the future is often in the headlines. At the same time, retro revivals and a thirst for nostalgia have continually proven a steady trend for a contrast.

This month, our friends at CreativeMornings are highlighting the theme of Heritage. For me, it’s extremely timely, coming just one month after losing my 96-year-old grandfather — and discovering his meticulously documented collection of photographic slides.

Grandpa 730x730 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageGrandma Julia and Grandpa Kenneth Fallon in Washington D.C. by Kenneth Fallon

Visuals of the past can be alluring for a multitude of reasons. In my case, I focus on the story behind them, allowing them to embody those moments for as long as possible before giving in to the next urge to check my most recent Twitter notification.

To me, heritage is about proof — proof of the uncertain. Ultimately, we take the stories of what has gone before, make them our own, and eventually pass them along to following generations, who will continue the cycle.

Here’s to building memories — history, even, with the visual arts.

static.squarespace 14 730x490 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageVintage background with watch by Vadim Georgiev

shutterstock 85870159 730x486 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageThai typeset word in letterpress by worradirek

static.squarespace 25 730x502 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageTwo women in Beirut, Lebanon by Marko5

static.squarespace 33 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageStretched and uncooked pizza dough with tomato sauce by area381

static.squarespace 43 730x486 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageLighting decoration with vintage bulbs by Hadrian

static.squarespace 5 730x979 The present past: a visual exploration of heritageOld and digital photo cameras by Poprotskiy Alexey.