I've upped the ante on unusual living spaces with my most recent experiment--converting a porta potty into an off-grid tiny home. And living in it.
The porta home is the love child of my obsession with odd-space living and frustration over my city's lack of affordable housing. I was shooting for the Road Less Traveled in Austin, Texas, when I excused myself to use the restroom--an oversized, handicapped-compliant porta potty. It was huge. I immediately thought, "Someone could live in here." We'd just shot with a guy who converted his shed into a tiny home, so why not?
Returning to L.A., I was struck by the preponderance of open land. Backyards, wide lots, empty plots. Plenty of spaces for micro-dwellings. Legal dwellings. Tiny houses in the city. I started to wonder if I could convince people to take a popular rural trend--tiny houses on wheels--and apply it to my city. But to get folks on board, I'd need a compelling pitch.
Enter: The world's first porta potty tiny home:
The above video trilogy tracks the progress of our build in three 60-second increments. The fourth video chronicles the first monthlong residency.
Now, in 2019, the porta-home is complete--or is a prototype ever really complete??--and housed in a backyard in northwest Los Angeles. You can track its progress on my diary page and follow us through the social media, especially the @Devine_Diaries Instagram. I've been living in the porta-home for periods of time, testing functionality and raising awareness about tiny living possibilities in urban areas. And, of course, challenging misconceptions about what it means to live in outside the norm in America's most materialistic city.
Plans to pilot a housing charity program for homeless college students, through my organization Our Backyard Homes, are well underway. Making an impact on our community is our ultimate goal!