Sweet Dreams (Are Made of Stress) by Stanford University
After tracking my stress levels for a week, I noticed that there were few days when I enjoyed quality sleep for a sustained amount of time. Procrastinating my coursework kept me up at night, so I converted the data into notes for a lullaby to relieve tension and remind myself to go to bed at a more reasonable hour. The final piece uses a music box to simultaneously play the song and visually represent how my stress and stressors changed over time.
I ranked my stress on a scale from 1 (low) to 15 (high) every 3 hours for 7 days. This scale corresponds to the 15 notes on this music box such that lower notes reflect moments of low stress and vice versa for high notes. The lowest note indicates that I was asleep. Each note on a solid vertical line represents 3 hours of my week, and there are additional notes interspersed to give a sense of acceleration and indicate stretches when I was particularly scattered. Midnight of a new day is denoted by a chord with three notes. Different colors represent reoccurring moments, like classes and internship work. I took some artistic license when stacking notes to create harmonies, but the underlying data are still visible on the paper strip via the line chart.