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.

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.


**Visit Broken Light’s main gallery here ▸ Now a 501(c)3 non-profit! Please donate here.

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4 responses to “The Silent Cry”

  1. Robert Crisp Avatar
    Robert Crisp



  2. John Kelly Avatar
    John Kelly

    simply stunning. great image.


  3. Liz Gilbert Avatar

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


  4. Brenda Braddock Avatar
    Brenda Braddock

    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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