Monday, June 21, 2010

A Life Through Pictures


A bit of a different post today...

I stumbled across a story online from The New York Times about a man named Jamie Livingston. Just a regular guy, like you or I.

He took one polaroid photo every day for 18 years. They are photos that might not be incredibly interesting as single images, but when combined, they create a patchwork of life.... Jamie's self portraits, him hanging out with friends, the engagement ring he bought and the days where it seems he had no inspiration at all.



The images form into a crescendo for me when they begin to show us his journey through illness. Hospitals, incisions... it's enough to turn a fairly light hearted collection of daily images into a very personal diary of sorts.


We see him struggle. We see him laugh. We see him deteriorate. And, ultimately, the images come to an end.

It's a huge body of work. Eighteen years of photos everyday. What a commitment, what a statement.

It makes me wonder what my life would look like in snapshots. How about the lives that I'm creating for my children?

What would your polaroid a day look like? What would your collection say as a whole?

To see more of the Photo A Day Project and learn more about Jamie Livingston, please visit http://photooftheday.hughcrawford.com/

7 comments:

PKKDesign said...

That is some serious commitment.
What a great story.

Jenny said...

I know! I have no idea what I would photograph if this were my project... but I guess it isn't so much the daily images as it is seeing the collection as a whole. I was truly inspired and felt like I began to know him through the photos. Really an amazing project and life story.

artyowza said...

Very inspiring!

Makes me look at my own life and surroundings with fresh eyes.

I know a few people that do 365 photo projects ..... one day a year ....and I really like to see those in slide shows.

agirlandherbrush said...

what a truly inspiring idea! wow. i am sure that those who he left behind are thankful for his gift.

Jenny said...

Inspired indeed...

I wonder what he thought as he was taking the photos and making the collection. Did he know what an autobiographical statement it would ultimately become?

I think about the thousands of photos I have taken of my kids (and I DO mean thousands!). It has never been a mission to shoot them so often... it just sortof happened but I'm now realizing how well their early lives and growth will be documented. I already look back often to previous photos fondly. They are more than snapshots to me and I'm realizing that I am making a collection for them. All of sudden, those snapshots become so much more. They are collections celebrating their lives.

Jo Anna said...

Wow. That is inspiring.
It is such an intimate thing to share with the world...in a really great way. I love when people share the little bits of themselves that most would never see. It is the sparkle of humanity.

AG Ambroult said...

Oh wow. What an amazing story. It's as if he knew all along, that this chronicle of life would inspire aven after her was gone. I love the concept, and am tempted to do something similar. Thanks for this...