After a holiday I usually struggle into the arrivals lounge with carrier bags brimming with tat, a couple of sandy disposable cameras, an empty wallet and an Instagram account groaning under the weight of all the gratuitous exotic photographs I’ve inflicted on my friends. I don’t often spend my time coming up with innovative alternative ways to log my trip. Which is the difference between me and the BA Media and Interaction Design students at ECAL, or the École Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne in Switzerland.
Over the course of a week-long stay in Beijing, 15 students from the course looked at the way they recorded their experiences there, and sought to come up with some new means of doing so in a project called Beijing Connection. “Our objectives were to work around the topic of quantified self, data logging and also on a reflection about regular pictures and movies that people usually record during a journey,” they explain.
Their solution included films like Huge Selfie, in which the entire class was photographed in hundreds of different places throughout the city, Take Me a Picture Please, in which they film the various passers-by who kindly stop to take photographs of them, and Eat Me, a slightly gross film document which sees a camera strapped to a pair of chopsticks record everything they eat. It’s a fascinating and holistic approach to rethinking the way we interact with new places, and all 15 of the projects are catalogued on a neat, dedicated, self-explanatory website.