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Photo taken by contributor Kait Mauro, a 22-year-old Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native who has lived all over the country. Kait has a diagnosis of major depression, severe and recurrent, as well as having experienced anxiety and disordered eating during her teenage years. She is currently an undergraduate at Washington University in Saint Louis where she studies Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies and Creative Writing. Her primary mediums are poetry and photography, though she has also been known to dabble in printmaking and other genres of writing. She seeks to understand her experiences and to connect with others through her art.
About this photo: “I took this self portrait on the beach in Monterey Bay, CA on New Year’s Day. It was during a solo three week backpacking trip I was taking and I stopped in Monterey Bay for a few days. I was staying in the hostel there and had a pretty reclusive time, lots of walking alone and writing and breathing in the ocean air. I woke up on New Year’s Day and wanted to start the year off by making something, to set the tone for the rest of the year. So I placed my camera on a piece of driftwood since I didn’t have my tripod with me, and took this photograph of myself looking out at the ocean.”