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!

The Silent Cry

jaeda dewalt the silent cry

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: “I love the way shadows can paint our face with deep emotions. This self-portrait speaks to the sea of darkness, the silent cry and the quieter emotions I so often hide from the rest of the world. There are days I find my adhd, ptsd and bipolar a triumph as i am hyper-creative with a keen eye for detail, and other days I sink into non-productive periods, darkness and sometimes feel like a prisoner to my mind.

Find more from Jaeda at FacebookTwitter and YouTube.


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4 comments on “The Silent Cry

  1. Robert Crisp
    December 26, 2015



  2. John Kelly
    December 28, 2015

    simply stunning. great image.


  3. Liz Gilbert
    December 29, 2015

    This photo is absolutely fantastic. I wish you well on your road to recovery.


  4. Brenda Braddock
    December 31, 2015

    I totally identify with this picture. I have struggled with anxiety ,PTSD and bi polar disorder since age 12. Your picture depicts how I feel at times. Like there is no way out.


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