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!

Of Hurt and Hope

I created this self portrait to express how difficult it is to hang onto hope when mental illness has me in its clutches. Too often it becomes a private, daily battle with invisible scars. FACEBOOK@JaedaDeWaltArtography

Photo taken by contributor Jaeda DeWalt, a conceptual self-portrait artist in her forties from Seattle, Washington. Her battles with mental illness hearken back to her earliest memories, at age 4, when she became obsessed with the number four and performed exhaustive rituals in patterns of four. During her teen years, she began noticing extreme mood swings, manic one moment and depressed the next, and in her late 20′s she finally sought treatment and was diagnosed with Bipolar, OCD, PTSD, Anxiety, and ADHD. Her doctors told her they believed the mental illness was brought on by a severe concussion she sustained at age two, along with the trauma of being sexually abused as a child into her young adult years. Her life was filled with self-destructive coping methods until she went full force into creating, in her mid-twenties. The process of creating and putting herself in front of the camera felt cathartic, liberating and healing. The photographic medium opened up a new world to her and ignited a kind of passion within that she didn’t even know she was capable of experiencing. She has been on an ever-evolving, healing journey, ever since.

About this photo: “Of Hurt and Hope: I created this self portrait to express how difficult it is to hang onto hope when mental illness has me in its clutches. Too often it becomes a private, daily battle with invisible scars.

Find more from Jaeda at FacebookTwitter and YouTube.

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6 comments on “Of Hurt and Hope

  1. dimdaze
    June 9, 2015

    Hauntingly beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. williamchasterson
    June 12, 2015

    Reblogged this on William Chasterson.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. loricarlson66
    June 18, 2015

    Wow… you can really feel the despair in that photo — Jaeda captured the grip of mental illness so well!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Awesome art…

    Liked by 1 person

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