Stettinius isn't the type of guy to dream up some grand project and then execute it. Instead he carries a camera with him everywhere, usually one with a plastic lens, using it to gather visual nuggets wherever he is. The resulting photos show a wonderfully sharp eye and warped sense of humor.
The photography-integrated-into-life method is decidedly unfashionable. The huge majority of photographers I saw at Photolucida were more project oriented. The prevailing model is to develop a concept of something that has photographic potential —often of personal interest but not always— and then methodically take photographs of that project until a body of work is created, with the ultimate goal of showing the work at Photolucida or similar venue.
The potential pitfall of this method is that the resulting photographs can seem secondary to the project. Often the artist statement conveys all the information required and you needn't look at more than a few photos to get the gist of it. Such projects may be appropriate for the idea-centric art world but they enslave photography as a tool, not a lifestyle.
I think photographs should come first. Arrange them in projects later if you must or else leave them as is in a big loose stack. Either way, photography that is integral to life seems to me to be the strongest because it comes from purest motivation: the very simple need to translate the world into photographs. Of course I am biased because this how I approach my own work, but it's what I like to see in others too.
Is this enough? For most curators, collectors, etc, probably not. I'm guessing that Gordon Stettinius' photos received a lukewarm reception at the reviews. He was probably told he should edit, focus, develop a storyline, whatever. He was probably told his photographs don't serve any broader story, that they're just observations. Exactly! Observation is photography's central requirement. Thinking is secondary. Shoot first, ask questions later, perhaps in a blog post.