Week 03: 
A week of thank yous


The topic:
This week we wanted to see how kind we are, and we decided to focus on the “thank you(s)” we say. I was kind of curious to see how difficult a whole week of this might be!

Data gathering:
I reported every single time I would thank somebody and somebody would thank me, adding details about who he/she was, if it was in “real life” or through a text or email, if it was an English “thank you” or an Italian “grazie” (I also had a Spanish “gracias”), and some other information about how much it was meant. 
It was hard, especially because this is one of those things your mind can trick you with, and you start noticing you’re about to say thank you before it even comes out of your mouth (…so eventually you would just decide not to say “thank you” in the first place!)

What really jumped out at me when looking at my data was how many thanks I say to strangers: I am an unbelievably compulsive thanker to waiters and waitresses, especially; but I don’t really thank so much my friends and family. 

Data drawing:
Thus for the data-drawing, I thought It was more interesting to aggregate and divide my data per category of people rather than exploiting them chronologically.

This is actually one of my favorite postcards because it is very detailed and precise data-wise (even if my boyfriend said he’s 100% sure he thanked me more times than the ones I reported…mmmmh), it is also one of my favorites because this was the first week I really realized something about me!

Slow and small data:
I like how we are illustrating our lives through small data, every time imagining and inventing a visual model to represent a specific little story we might find, with the attempt of exploring new visuals to please each other!

At week 3, Stefanie and I started texting about Dear Data pretty regularly, we share our tiny daily troubles with the data collection and so, and it’s fun! It seems “real” already! Our boyfriends/husbands and friends are also so into it! They would start asking us “What is the data this week?” and comment on it very regularly.

This postcard went through a rough patch: after 10 days I posted it I found my thank you card back in my mailbox: it was all dirty and a yellow sticker was on it that said: “return to sender – address not known – unable to forward”. Where did it go? Did it ever leave the States? I figured that I should probably make clearer that THESE ARE POSTCARDS! Maybe the postman didn’t even get that an address was on the back!


The Process: 



Tracking thank-yous, and the type of relationship I had with the person, from least intimate relationship (stranger) to the most intimate (my husband). 

Data memories: 
I was in Helsinki this week for a conference, which meant many of my thank-yous were whispered under my breath in Finnish to shopkeepers because I felt too shy at speaking the language.

Data drawing: 
This is one of those weeks where I like the drawing outcome but it’s probably not very insightful. The data I gathered was pretty simple in the end, I need to add more depth. 

But like I mentioned before, I do like the idea of lifting textures from my week and drawing them, so perhaps I am interested more in the drawing than the data. Still figuring this out. 

Giorgia’s card: 
Oh, this poor card arrived through my mail slot so bedraggled and crumpled, poor thing! Again, I really like the richness of the data that Giorgia is gathering. I don’t know why this level of data-gathering eludes me, I think I’m too impatient, perhaps. 















The Process:

Preliminary sketches

A rip! Just par for the course with Royal Mail...

A rip! Just par for the course with Royal Mail...