The Weight of Objects

The Weight of Objects is a portrait project by Ramsay de Give and Kristen Joy Watts. Each diptych features a portrait of an individual and an object with a story.


“I lived with my best friend for just over 10 years, starting in college dorms. When we got a Christmas tree for our first apartment, we didn’t have an angel tree topper so we used this Steven Seagal figure instead. When we finally moved apart, we split up the decorations, and I got to keep Mr. Seagal.”

Katie Notopoulos was photographed in New York City on June 21st. You can follow her on Twitter.



“I was awarded this pin in April when I was named my high school class’s valedictorian. I was especially honored by it because I am only the second African American valedictorian at my school, I’m the first in my family to be acknowledged this way, and, because of it, I know that the person who I created and extracted out of myself after my father’s death has proved to be real and living. I wear this pin every day on the left side of my cardigan, over my heart, because it still amazes me that I earned it.”

James Kale II was photographed on May 23rd in New York City. His valedictorian pin is pictured below three other pins he has been given for various awards.




“I was obsessed with filming everything with this Super 8 for a while, partly because hiding behind the camera allowed me to go places I might not have been comfortable going, especially when I first moved to New York, and people always want to talk to you when you have a weird old camera. One day I abandoned it and moved on to something else, and I think I’ll wait at least five or ten years to develop the finished roll of film in there. Super 8 looks and feels like time that is so long past, and eventually when you look at it that will be the case.”

Sara Cwynar was photographed in New York City on May 26th. You can view her work.




“This dress, what I call my “Guatemalan muumuu,” is the most comfortable thing I own and only my closest friends and family have had the great pleasure of seeing me in it (and maybe a delivery man or two). While on a business trip with my father several years ago, I picked it up at a market between trips to the rainforest and Mayan ruins. I would live my entire life in it if it was socially acceptable.”

Jillian Choi was photographed in New York City on February 25th. She is the executive editor of Maker Magazine.




“This book mysteriously appeared on the family bookshelf one day. It was the first book my wife and I read aloud to each other, often in tearful hysteria, and it’s since become an annual read-a-loud tradition. When we’re feeling particularly troubled by life we find an over-the-top passage to recite and it’s never failed to lighten the mood.”

Richard Koci Hernandez was photographed in Austin on March 11th. You can follow him on Twitter and on Instagram: @koci.




“I found this ID bracelet after my dad’s funeral when I was 16, rummaging through his little leather treasure chest full of cufflinks and buttons and such; I snuck off with it and a vintage pair of bucking horse cufflinks. In a sense, it embodies the gentle cowboy life I had before moving to New York and has been with me on all the adventures that have unfolded since – from every Bergdorf event, every fashion week, every new apartment, to every thrill and heartache. I never take it off.”

Cannon Tekstar Hodge was photographed in New York City on May 5th. You can follow her on Twitter.




“Six years ago I was on a pebbly beach in Peru, south of Trujillo, and I looked down and saw small pieces of charcoal in the sand – indicating an archaeological site – and this little figure which I dug out with a stick. I call her My Little Peruvian Goddess. She could still be buried in the sand but now she’s free, with me.”

Nick Evangelos was photographed on December 26th in Santa Fe.




“This is a collection of bus tickets from the three cities I’ve lived in over the past five years: Portland, Oregon; Hanoi, Vietnam; and San Francisco, California. Every time I move, I try to get rid of as many things as possible, but never my books, and these tickets were tucked between pages. They remind me that no matter what, certain little pieces of your life will find a way to stick around; even when you’ve forgotten something or think you’ll never see it again, one day you open a book and there it is.”

Josh Riedel was photographed in Austin on March 11th. You can follow him on Instagram: @Josh.

More images (and much bigger) on The Weight of Object website. You can send them an e-mail: or follow them on Twitter: @weightofobjects. They also share outtakes and hints about upcoming posts on Instagram: @weightofobjects.