It’s the first day of camp!!
Betrayed by public transportation, I unfortunately arrived a little late and missed the meet and greet. But everyone was so friendly and welcoming, there really was no reason for me to be anxious. I thoroughly embarrassed myself with my terrible name-memorizing-skills. After getting my schedules and familiarizing myself with the studio, we got to finally meet our mystery client.
Project Nia is an organization that fights to protect underprivileged youth and end youth incarceration. We met with Mariame Kaba, the founder of Project Nia. She was bursting with so much energy and enthusiasm, it was contagious! I had a wonderful experience being able to participate in the “peace circle”, and at the same time, it was a shocking experience to learn about the injustice of youth incarceration. We were give two projects: an advocacy poster to close Illinois youth prisons, and a zine to accompany an exhibition about the personal stories of incarceration.
By the time we were done with the meeting, we were pretty hungry, so we went straight to Ethiopian Diamond for dinner. It was my first time having Ethiopian cuisine, and it was not only delicious, but also a lot of fun to eat!
When we got back, we immediately got to work on researching and brainstorming concepts. It was an intense night of a lot of thinking critically, sensitively, and intuitively. I think I was brain-dead by 1 am, so I was impressed to see how energetic everyone was through out the night (or morning).
Finally, I’d like to say this: figuring out how to blow up an air mattress at 3 am in the morning is really, really hard.