SCREEN TIME: Jake

“I watched many shows and movies throughout the pandemic and especially in lockdown. Even with the privilege of being able to live with my dad and sister through it all, I would stay up in my room watching endless amounts of television. When I got covid in November of 2020, I started to watch Among Us streams on Youtube and Twitch. Among Us is a game to play with friends or strangers in which the majority of the group are crewmates, trying to fix their ship, while one or two of them are imposters. The goal of the imposters is to kill off all of the crewmates, while the goal of the crewmates is to stay alive long enough to determine who the imposters are. When a body is found, a meeting is called to discuss the events leading up to the murder. There is a chat feature where people can text each other during meetings; however, when playing with friends, or as streamers do, you can verbally discuss with each other on Discord. Streamers, such as Pokimane, Valkyrae, and Corpse, were my favorite to watch. Among Us streams were easy for me to watch because there were no characters to get super connected to; I did not have to feel much to watch them play a game. It was mindless for me to watch hours and hours of streamers, making the days of quarantine go by with ease. Even though I was isolated, It was nice to watch these streamers interact with their friends and make new ones via the simplicity of playing an online game. When I did crave human connection during those two weeks, I would play Among Us with my friends, and we would all get on Discord and talk during the meetings trying to determine which of our friends had betrayed us (in-game, that is). Playing and watching Among Us got me through being held up in my room, while only seeing people through my screen.” - Jake

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So, when I went to Jake’s house the first time to shoot a Screen Time session, it was to capture the family (Dave, Andie, and Jake). But the lighting was rough and I requested to come back for another shot at it. I also asked if Jake would be up for their own Screen Time session during the day. I hadn’t seen their room yet, but I knew it had good morning light through a window and would likely be full of fun colors and art...and wow, I was right! Jake’s space is crammed with colorful images on the wall, electric hanging lights, a neon sign, and an overflowing closet of clothes. It's a small room for a tall person, but Jake has made it feel like a comfortable college dorm room. On the bookshelves are jars of markers all color coordinated. Signs of coffee-loving abound as well as an eclectic array of pillows, candles, and intentionally arranged albums. The room has charm, beauty, and personality much like it's architect.