Making a Life-Long Project Better

I’ve been doing the Everyday Project for six and a half years now.  I knew joining the Peace Corps would add a unique spice to my project.  Two years of projects with weird landscaped and veiled women in the background?  I loved the idea.  It will make my project stand out.  When I started getting used to being here in Morocco, however, I realized there was another advantage to being in the Peace Corps.  Time.

There is a lot to do in the Peace Corps.  I spend a lot of time hanging out with my Host Family, eating, and teaching kids.   But, inevitably, there is a lot of free time.  I knew this would happen.  As a result, I made a nice long list of personal goals I wanted to accomplish during my 27 months here.  Most of them were writing goals.  But there were a few random ones.  Genealogy was one.  Another, however, involved my Everyday Project.

I’ve seen a couple projects that aligned the eyes in their pictures.  They are some of my favorite projects.  If you can find a way to align the eyes of the pictures, you can go as fast or as slow as you want.  For me—without aligned eyes—I dare not go faster than ten pictures per second.  Even at that rate, my face bounces around enough that it is slightly disorienting.  So I put it on my list: Align the eyes in my Everyday Project.

I knew it was an ambitious project from the get-go.  To start, I wasn’t sure how to do it.  I tried several different projects over a week in February.  Finally, I realized the best way to do it was with the Ruler option in Powerpoint.  I did three months that week.  Later I realized I was making the pictures too large.  I started again.  It takes about half an hour to do a month—a little less than a minute per picture.  I’ve been doing this for six and half years.  That’s about 2,200 pictures.  Like I said…it’s an ambitious project.

When I started working, I thought it would be a rather monotonous project.  It is, at times.  But, more and more, I find that that is not the case.  I see my face and realize things.  I have a slight tilt to my head.  My eyes look better in the sunlight than in the faux light of the indoors.  I can see when I had been crying—eyes still red.  I can tell when I just got out of the hot tub—hair still wet.

More importantly, I look to the background.  This is the part that brings back memeories.  I like it when I am not home in the pictures.  It’s great to try to figure out where I was…and why?  Who was I dating at that point?  How long till we break up?  Who was I hanging out with?  What did we do?  These pictures hold my life in their pixels.  I’m loving this “monotonous” part of this fantastic project.

Here’s a quick look at what I am doing.  I am currently 300 pictures in.  If you are looking to start your own project (which I strongest suggest you do) or need any advice on aligning eyes, feel free to contact me.  I love spreading this project.

The Everyday Project: Year Six

The Everyday project is one of my alternative creative outlets to writing.  For the past six years, I have taken a picture of my face on a daily basis.  When put in quick succession, it creates the reality of how quickly life changes while showing the slow progress of aging.  I am 23.5 years old….so this project shows 25.5% of my life.  With each passing year, this project means more and more to me.

It’s strange to watch the whole video.  I can see my high school self.  I can tell you when I became popular.  When I went to London.  When I started college.  When I lost a friendship.  Gained a relationship.  Lost a relationship.  Moved.  Became depressed.  Gained weight.  Lost weight.  It all shows itself in this video.  It’s the best way I know to lay everything on the table and take away the truth of someone’s life.  I will always be in love with this project.

Thus far, I have only been able to convince one person to do this project.  The thing is, he got someone to start the project as well.  No matter your age, this is a project I challenge you to start.  Nothing is more rewarding and challenging.  Seeing yourself age is so hard…but so eye-opening.  If you need a little more convincing, check out some of the other projects around the web here.  If you do decide to start the project, let me know.  I’ll link any Everydayer’s video with glee.

With Love,
Richard