Well, The Diary Project is ticking along quite nicely now – in fact, it's hard to believe that I'm into the sixth month already. Doing the envelope became a satisfying daily habit very quickly and I haven’t missed a single one yet.
Unfortunately I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, which can often be quite disabling and some days getting my envelope done is a major achievement. But being committed to producing that one small piece of art a day, even when I don’t feel like it, has been very good for both my practice and my moral.
Doing the envelopes themselves is usually fine, although I have the occasional day when it’s really challenging, usually when I’m ill. However, getting into a regular rhythm with updating the project blog took longer. Thankfully I’m now firmly in the habit of scanning, uploading and posting the scanned drawings weekly.
As is invariably the case with any art project, doing the documentation seems to take twice as long as making the actual art! But I’ve overcome my usual slowness with documentation by regarding the blog as an artwork in its own right.
The Diary Project Rules
1. I commit to posting a self-addressed envelope every single day during 2007.
2. All envelopes must contain something and feature a drawing on the outside.
3. There are no restrictions on what can be placed inside the envelope.
4. Envelopes cannot be drawn or filled in advance, each must be completed within a single day. However, previously collected or made objects can be used to fill the envelope.
5. The daily envelope must be completed and posted before midnight.
6. If I miss a day I cannot draw and fill the envelope later.
7. Any missed days must be documented.
8. I must make every effort to post the envelope myself and other people are only allowed to post the envelope if I am ill or there is an emergency. If this occurs it must be documented.
9. Identical white DL envelopes must be used.
10. Envelopes can be posted from anywhere.
11. Drawings must be on the back of the envelope but can continue onto the front.
12. Drawings must be dated and signed on the day of making.
13. Drawings can be in any medium.
14. Drawings can be any size.
15. Drawings can be of any subject.
16. Drawings can be in any style.
17. Drawing themes can repeat but each drawing must be unique.
18. The project will be recorded in a notebook.
19. The date the envelopes return home will be documented in the notebook.
20. Any deviations from the rules must be recorded.
21. Envelopes will be recorded and documented on a project blog.
22. Envelopes will be scanned and blogged on their return but this doesn’t have to be done on the day they return.
23. The project blog can contain thoughts and reflections on the project as well as images of the envelopes.
24. I am not allowed to open any of the envelopes when they return. Envelopes will be kept sealed until the finished project is exhibited as a whole. At this point, members of the public will be free to open the envelopes and investigate the contents.
25. The contents of individual envelopes will be documented on the blog once a member of the public has opened the envelope.