FEATURE FRIDAY: Everything I Own

My Friend, Ruben, is a photographer and when he first told me about his fantastic final photography project (at Texas Tech University), I knew I had to share it with the world outside of Lubbock, TX. I don't need to explain too much because he does a great job in his statement below, but I will tell you that for an entire semester, Ruben photographed and categorized EVERYTHING he owned.

Panel One of Every Thing I Own by Ruben Castillo
Everything I Own by Ruben Castillo

I am twenty-five years old and in my home I store roughly four hundred and seventy objects. I’ve collected all these objects my whole life some were given to me others I purchased or maybe found some but for whatever reason I chose to keep them.  For “Everything I Own”, I photographed all of these items and sorted them starting with objects that I valued the most and ending with those that I least valued.  While I don’t believe these objects define me as a person I do believe they tell a story about me what I enjoy, what I value the most, and my past or maybe where I maybe heading to in the future.  By displaying them all together, they create a self-portrait of who I am today. 
I choose to place the objects in a very uniform order creating a grid that reads left to right. The grid allows for an organization of all these objects creating a visual coherency between all them.  This need to organize and create a visual reference and exploration of myself comes partly from curiosity but mainly from where I find myself in my own life.  At the moment I’m in my senior year of my undergraduate degree and completing my final semester.  It’s been the busiest semester and sometimes the hardest semester of my life and has forced me to really begin taking a more serious approach to my education.  And as I venture to the next step in my adult life I find myself very confused about what my next step will be and very unsure of what the future holds but by creating this grid and in a sense organizing myself I am able to possibly give some insight to these questions.
- Ruben Castillo

After he explained his process to me, I thought about everything I owned, what I valued most and about the things I have laying around. There's probably a lot of items that I don't even acknowledge or serve no purpose. I'm not sure I could have done this project, it would have been way too overwhelming for me, owner of a lot more that four hundred and seventy objects. If the objects we own do tell our story, at least I know mine would be very detailed ;)

Ruben, I'm so proud of you and your brain!