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By Brianna Wiest

Luís Giestas had anxiety. That much he knew. What he didn’t know was that the project he would begin in an effort to better understand his emotional experience would end up influencing many people to look at their feelings in an entirely new way.

Over the course of 300 days, he recorded his emotions on the hour, and documented them in a series of three color-coded diaries. Employing several psychology models, he then organized his feelings in graphs, charts and color oscillations.

The final product is a chart that traces uncomfortable emotions down to their purest (yet most intense) form. For example, the root of insecurity is terror, the root of annoyance is rage, and the root of serenity is ecstasy. Being able to identify emotions in such simple terms is calming enough, but the real objective of his work was to illustrate that there is a difference between what we expect to feel, what we actually feel, what we express that we feel, and what we remember feeling after-the-fact. But it is not in how we diminish these contradictions that gives us a sense of peace, it is how we wield them most boldly.




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Images: Luís Giestas

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