It was midnight in Cairo when Giulia posed to take a photo while she was Skype calling her friend back in Italy to catch up. At 9pm GMT on 24 August, 7 billion people around the world lived different moments.
Mohamed ElMahdi, 25, amateur photographer and programme supervisor at Befrienders, a non profit providing suicide support, started a photography project, “7 Billion Moments”, to document these moments.
“We are not usually aware of the fact that there are other people who live with us the exact moment but are doing something that’s totally different,” ElMahdi said. “This is what I want to show.”
The idea behind the project is to gather photos of people doing their daily activities at the exact moment around the world. Submitted photos show people working on their laptops, others hanging out with friends or reading at home.
“Photos don’t have to be taken professionally,” he said. “Mobile photos work just fine in recording the moment.”
In its first two rounds, “7 Billion Moments” received submissions from several countries including Egypt, Italy, France and the US. ElMahdi, who depends on his network to promote the idea, hopes that the project reaches all the countries around the globe, he said.
“The project needs more marketing efforts,” he said. “I sometimes ask my friends for help in running the Facebook page.”
The project, which was founded last year, was inspired by the United Nation’s 7 billionth citizen campaign held in 2011. The campaign raised awareness about the opportunities and challenges of having such a large world population.
Photos of “7 Billion Moments” will hopefully be shown in an exhibition. They can also be viewed online on the project’s Facebook page.