I invite you to join the fun, expand your community, meet some strangers. It works like this….
- Introduce yourself to a stranger, and tell them that you are participating in an arts project.
- Let them know that you’d like to add them to your community of imaginary friends and family.
- Document your encounter by taking a snapshot of yourself with your new IFaF’s and posting it to this Facebook page and/or to Instagram with the hashtags #IFAFP and #imaginaryfriendsfamilyproject. Include in your caption the first name(s) of your IFaF’s and where you were–the place, city, state, region, country, etc.–when the photo was taken.
- Share your story on the Facebook page, and/or send me an email and tell me about your experience.
- Invite others to participate.
- I can’t wait to hear what you discover.
I kicked off this project in November 2013, when I lived in Warsaw, Poland and discovered that Warsaw public transit largely wraps up before it’s time to go home if you’re out late. Given my near-absent Polish language skills at the time, walking home seemed to require less courage than hailing a cab.
I needed something to take my mind off the long walk and the fact that I was alone in a new-to-me city well after sensible strolling hours. The obvious answer?!? I invented friends and family to keep me company. The photo-text series catalyzed that night became the first installment of the Imaginary Friends & Family Project.
I had so much fun meeting my Imaginary Friends & Family–my IFaF’s–over the fall and winter that I created a Facebook page and Instagram hashtags #IFaFP #imaginaryfriendsfamilyproject and invited everyone to join the discussion and to share their IFaF’s with the rest of us.
The project has since gone to a lot of places including to Walmart with some of my students in the North Georgia mountains, to a brewery fundraiser for a rescued dog, to visit Black Friday workers, to Iceland, back to Poland, and to the UGA/Auburn Game Day 2014 in Athens, GA, USA, where I met 48 people who agreed to be my Imaginary Friends & Family. Out of 50 people I asked that day, only one person flat out turned me down, and another took a rain check because he was working. Forty-eight out of fifty people said, “Yes!” Here’s the story.
You can do it, too. Join the community by liking our Facebook page, and make a stranger a friend!
Special Thanks to Joshua Payne for documentary photography.