This animation is one of several manifestations of a design experiment about identity and self-representation by Kyle Warfield.
Each day of 2012 I took a self portrait and uploaded it as my Facebook profile picture. This animation includes all 366 photos.
My original intention was to document and explore the broad spectrum of faces I could conjure. I sought an alternative to the inauthentic, stagnant, and cliché profile pictures I observed online—motivated in part by the banality of popular selfie memes, the omnipresence of the duckface, the ubiquity of Facebook users consistently using the same gestures in every photo of themselves, and so on...
I frequently make unusual faces at myself in the mirror, and sometimes I cycle through different expressions when friends are trying to take my photo. The general idea for this project developed a couple months before the new year. I figured it would be a good opportunity to finally document some of my favorite faces and ultimately string them together as a unified expression.
With intentions of exploration and experimentation, I established some simple, malleable constraints and programmed a system with sufficient freedom for improvisation. It allowed me to be most myself and for the project to adapt as chance and spontaneity modified the process. I wanted to keep the focus on my facial expression—not on my context (so I used an objective white backdrop) nor on my aging (so I shaved and got haircuts as I regularly would). I proposed to upload the selfie as my Facebook profile picture each day so my friends could observe a very gradual shift in my expression, see what shirt I would be wearing that day and what my hair looks like when I get out of bed. I went entire days exposing some of my least flattering faces to online friends. #based.
I began the year with my most neutral expression, the one that requires the least amount of effort to make. Complete relaxation of all facial muscles. I planned to move through a few common expressions, then transition to the more abnormal ones................
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