I’M GOING TO LIVE FOREVER – 2

My #dailycoffee project lasted 190 days. 190 pictures of the coffee I drink everyday. Here, a few ones that I find interesting:

Frequently asked questions:

– What do you think about this experience?

I wasn’t surprised. It was just as I though. Some days I did not know what to shoot or I was traveling, but always managed to photograph a different coffee scene.

– Did you enjoyed it then?

Yes. It was my 5 min fun moment of the day.

Why did you stop #dailycoffee?

It was a bunch of things. Mainly I had diarrhea (caused by food poisoning) and could not drink coffee for a few days. Then I felt that I would cheat if I started posting coffees again.

– Oh my god! Are you OK?

Yeah, pretty fine thanks.

– So.. that means you are not going to live forever?

No. I have something else to do everyday, look at her eyes when I wake up.

I’M GOING TO LIVE FOREVER

There was once an American sergeant, who every morning would hand-wash his socks and tend them on a rope wherever he was outposted. When a reporter asked him if he was afraid to die in battle, he answered: “Not at all, you know, I’m going to live forever, I have socks to wash”.

Inspired by the tale, I decided to start doing something every day. I found washing the socks too elaborate, so I tried to think of something I already do everyday. Everyday I get up, shower, piss, shit, eat, drink, brush my teeth, have a cup of coffee … Why not do something with coffee?

So I decided to post on the Instagram network a picture of the coffee that I drink every day with the hashtag #dailycoffee. The only requirements are that it is really the coffee I’m going to drink, that every day is different and that requires some elaboration.

In so doing, I achieve several things:

– Use Instagram, the perfect platform for this project, trying to understand why it is used so much and if it can give me visibility as creative.

– Force me to think about what picture to shoot each day, a daily creative challenge to keep the brain moving, developing all the creativity I can about just one thing.

– Not to make a video of “a man has taken a picture of his daily coffee for 12 years.” No, I dont’ want to trivialize the daily effort, in order to do a 60 second video that gives me 15 minutes of fame. When I decide not to make any more pictures, it will be over. It is an exercise to develop creativity, not ego.

– And last, to live forever, because I have something to do the next day.

PS: At first, I thought I was not going be able to continue with my photos pass the first week, but to have a bit of brain stimulation every day, for me, is incentive enough to keep doing it. Having the creative habit.

THE PERFECT IDEA.

train

For years and years, since I began working in creativity and design, I have tried to find the perfect idea, the one that leads to the perfect, unflawed, and untamed design. The one that comes out of sheer inspiration. That idea that did not resemble to anything that had not been done before. The perfect idea. I have been an idealist, and I still am in a way, since I’m still devoted to ideas. Until one day, when a random encounter opened my eyes.

I was traveling by myself on a train going from an exotic small town in the malaysian countryside to Kuala Lumpur. For some reason, my local seat companion and I started talking. He spoke of his job buying and selling clothes. He would buy in other countries shirts and trousers, and sell them in Kuala Lumpur wholesale. For a moment it seemed as he was trying to convince me to buy some jeans, but he was just chit-chatting.

So, I tried to explain to him my job as a designer and creative person. He was really surprised and thought I was really lucky. According to my new friend, it was god that was expressing himself through me what made me a designer. It was then, when the agnostic inside me woke up. In vain, I explained the man that it was just a job. “It has nothing to do with god or with a mysterious muse,” I told him, “you get creative through experience and work.” He looked at me with astonishment as we continued to discuss. Without much thought, it was the first time, that I could explain how to get to the perfect idea. Or at least how to get close to it.

After many years of looking the wrong way, that one smily man unintentionally opened my eyes. We became such good friends in the short journey that he showed me a photo of his wife and daughter. When I had no pictures to show, he was surprised that at my age I was still single, but that is a story for another post.

Over the years, I’ve realized that there is no design “from scratch”, rather, you need a departure point for it to work. A departure point and a destination. Where do you want to go, and from where, and what are your tools and which ones can you use. All of it is experience to look for trails of ideas, chasing them down through the forests of your brain. Chasing the elusive prey.

This is what I have been doing these past 10 or so years.