Broken Light: A Photography Collective

We are photographers living with or affected by mental illness; supporting each other one photograph at a time. Join our community, submit today!

Self-Portrait #5

Photo taken by contributor Elijah Weerts, a 20-year-old photography student. People have always seen him as the outgoing, fun to be around, positive kid all through his life. He wasn’t ever “allowed” to be sad or at least he felt that he had to be the person who made everyone feel better. He thought that if he showed that he was sad that he was letting people down. Elijah has been a photography major for the past four semesters of college, and every time he does self-portraits people seem to respond to them very emotionally. Whether it be happy, uncomfortable, or sad, people are drawn to them. Photography allows him to show how he is feeling without having to say anything. It lets all of him be shown in a way people can somehow relate to and that’s what he gets passionate about. He wants people to feel something when they see his images. He wants people to actually stop and think about who they are.

About this photo: “Mental Hospital Doctor, Muslim, Evil Villian, Mummy, Ninja, it goes on and on. I’ve heard so many things about what this image makes people think and feel.  I made this photograph to see how people would react based on what you know.  The blank face allows you as the viewer to put a face to it on your own. I wanted the viewer to create the scenario in which they are engaging with this unknown character.”

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5 comments on “Self-Portrait #5

  1. pawsitiveHeather
    May 21, 2013

    I find this picture … disturbing. I feel like the person doesn’t really know who he is, so he is allowing the people around him to put a face on him, judge him, and he accepts it. He is what people tell him to be. The lighting on this picture is eerie, and awesome at the same time. Nice shot. This picture stirs me.

    Like

  2. charlypriest
    May 22, 2013

    Great picture, the light, the contrast of colours of black,white, red and yellowish. The face I would put is that of Brad Pitt who had just had a nose re-make and doesn´t want his dear Angie to see him all messed up. My comment is not too deep but I would by one of these.

    Like

  3. Ian Timings
    May 22, 2013

    I was fascinated by seeing what the photographer is like and the different takes on the picture. For me it was reminiscent of the invisible man and I thought it was a comment on how he was ignored by others, boy was I wrong 🙂 Incidentally I really like the image, great work!

    Like

  4. anitasjohn
    May 24, 2013

    everything so perfectly fits 🙂

    Like

  5. seeker3133
    May 29, 2013

    Anonymity is liberating. Still in the process of defining who and what he is. Discovered that deep inner personal knowledge of self is who we really are. Your true identity is not based on your exterior makeup. His hands are poetic, telling his story for him :).

    Like

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