Who we are & why we are

Welcome to the gallery site of Broken Light Collective. We are artists of all levels and abilities who are affected by mental illness. We create and we share our work for the therapeutic benefits to us, as well as others who may be struggling and feeling scared and alone. Together we can move from disconnected to collective.

Photo taken by contributor Carrie Hilgert, a photographer and portrait artist in her thirties from Northeast Kansas. After venturing into digital photography, she became interested in documenting her life with self portraits. This became particularly helpful when her life started to fall apart due to depression. All her other creative outlets left her, but she could always process her very dark feelings with self portraits. While she is doing much better now, she maintains compassion for those going through these hard things and hopes that her photography can give an honest insight into something that makes most people feel very isolated and alone.

About this photo: “I am a highly sensitive person. That’s actually a thing, I recently found out. Which makes me feel loads better and explains a lifetime of what I thought were personality flaws. I am open, I easily trust, I fall in love very hard and I get my feelings hurt often. But I believe to live a life of vulnerability and authenticity is the only way to get every moment out of my short time here. I tried numbing my feelings throughout my life; with meds, with alcohol, with sex, with sleep. And the problem with numbing is that you also numb the good stuff. I don’t do that anymore. I actually do want to feel everything because that’s how I feel alive.”

Find more from Carrie at her blog or flickr.


**Visit Broken Light’s main gallery here. Currently accepting submissions.

*Facebook & Twitter @BrokenLighCo & @DanielleHark. Follow for e-mail notifications.

10 responses to “A Blessing And A Curse”

  1. Rajiv Avatar

    Excellent, poignant shot


  2. carrieblueberry Avatar

    Thank you! P.s. this isn’t a self portrait but rather one of my very brave clients who has allowed me to photograph some of my feelings through her as a model. 🙂


  3. Deborah Senior Avatar
    Deborah Senior

    This is a beautiful image that needs no caption. Her isolation is palpable.


  4. Rhys Jones Avatar

    I really like this photo. Her nakedness shows her vulnerability, and the bucket implies her lack of worth. It’s very powerful.


  5. bigbird34 Avatar

    Beautiful! I checked out your flicr page. Your very talented.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Niki Avatar

    So beautifully raw.


  7. luro97 Avatar

    I can definitely identify with your story. Very courageous.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sarah W. Avatar
    Sarah W.

    I am a highly sensitive person too. And I also used to numb all my feelings and try to sleep them away. When I fall in love I fall hard and my heart takes twice as long to heal. More than others it seems. I am now in treatment for my drug use of about 15 yrs, depression, anxiety and ADD. It makes me feel good to know I’m not the only person out there that carries this big heart and all the feelings and struggles it comes with. 💕


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