Growing up I always found myself surrounded by male friends and an absence of females. i really did not like girls; we can be quite vicious. i believe i was attracted to the simplicity of life that came with having friends of the opposite sex. i always struggled with female friends and found a lack of trust standing in the midst of them. So with that, I chose to keep my distance as much as I could. When it came to decide my documentary topic, I knew I wanted to do something personal. I came across a book by Rania Matar 'A Girl and Her Room'. Various types of girls were incorporated in it. Their thoughts, desires and beliefs immediately drew me in. I knew then that I wanted my project to be on the one thing that I am uncomfortable with--girls. So, from there I began to formulate my own approach to Rania Matar's work. Those young women allowed a complete stranger into their sacred space--their room. To me, a girl's bedroom is like her diary--a private, personal place. That is where the title of this project, 'Dear Diary', came into play. I realized that regardless of my past experiences with female friends, not all girls are the same. I had reserves about them because I was not willing to get to know them. I know of so many girls, but I don't know anything about them.
So, for me to get to know them, I have to treat myself like a diary; I have to listen without judgment. I not only want them to be able to share their life, fears, or dreams with me, but for me to gain a greater understanding from them. This will be a learning experience for the both of us; and hopefully life changing.
I've chosen a random group of girls that I grew up with at some point in my life, but lost contact with. Like Rania, I photographed them in their rooms, but I also had each write in an actual diary, anonymously, that traveled to each girl. As it traveled to each person, they had an opportunity to read the thoughts of a complete stranger and hopefully realized that they are not alone; that we are all, in some way, connected to each other.