My project has the potential to say a lot about me–but it’ll definitely depend on where I go with it and specifically, where my research takes me. In general, I think the fact that I chose to focus on turning points as my topic reveals my curiosity about how we reflect and make meaning from experiences in our lives. I have also always loved non-fiction books with psychological or sociological foundations (for example, Freakonomics and Outliers) so I think using The Tipping Point as a core source for my project will reveal that specific interest of mine. And finally, this semester I’m taking English 325, which is a class about creative non-fiction, and I have already realized how much I enjoy this type of writing. I want to include some personal essays and creative nonfiction pieces in my project, which I think will reveal a lot about my personality, opinions, and feelings towards how I think about my life in terms of turning points.
In terms of my portfolio as a whole, I want it to showcase more than just my academic or professional interests. My ultimate goal is to seamlessly intertwine my personal thoughts and opinions (about life, writing, and myself as a writer) with the more structured elements such as my MIW projects and works from other classes. I also want my overall persona to be professional, not necessarily in the sense that employers will look to my portfolio during the hiring process, but more that I want my work and beliefs to be taken seriously and feel like they do not only exist because of a class project.
After looking at my annotated bibliography and various social media accounts, my Instagram caught my eye immediately. First, because I think photos are a very effective way of thinking about our lives since they immediately take us to a specific place or moment in time. I also started thinking about the nature of Instagram as a whole. Users curate their lives and choose which photos they want to share with the rest of the social media platform–which is usually photos that are the most visually appealing or hold the most meaning. Since my project focuses on turning points and important moments in our lives, I think Instagram makes for an interesting parallel to this. People decide what is important enough to share via Instagram and can also use it to reflect back on their memories. I plan to look back through my Instagram posts and see if there is any correlation between the photos I posted and the moments I think of as significant in my life so far. Who knows where this will take me, but I think it will be an eye-opening experience regardless, and hopefully contribute to the beginning stages of my project in a meaningful way.