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From the Inside Out


From the Inside Out

My senior capstone project is an 132 page book addressing the different experiences and misconceptions of growing up adopted. The book contains my interviews and photographs with 3 adoptees in differing family situations (including myself). 

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The book starts with a profile of each interviewee. While we all have a lot in common, all being born within the same week, then adopted and raised in America, we have significant differences. The first interviewee is my friend Molly, who was adopted by a single White mother from an orphanage in China at around 10 months old. The second is my friend Jenny, who is dark-skinned but was adopted by two White parents in Los Angeles at 1 day old. The last is myself, a blue-eyed White girl adopted by similarly blue-eyed White parents who were there at my birth. So unlike Molly and Jenny, being the same race as my parents means that I'm not "outed" by people meeting them.

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The interviews are split into two sections - Inward and Outward. Inward focuses on each person's experience growing up in a family where adoption was very familiar and normalized. This section features scanned family images of familiar scenes - birthdays, holidays, etc - and then some specific to adoption - getting paperwork finalized in court, coming home for the first time, etc. In Outward, each interviewee describes how others react to learning they were adopted and how they see adoption portrayed in media. This section features my personal photography of each person in their homes.

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