This post is the post I did on my personal blog site, with a few small edits. I’m currently working with my first volunteers and hope to publish those photos soon!
When I heard that about 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence in their life time, I was shocked and saddened. I’ve known several women in my lifetime that have told me of their experience so, I knew it happened, but not at that level. I’d like to see what I can do to change that, even a little. Some of my life experiences have shown me what it’s like to be part of a statistic. It can be quite an attack on the core.
I’m not sure exactly how this will play out in the end, but here’s what I want to try. I want to put faces on this. I think too many people think “oh, that only happens to other people, not people like me”. I want to use kind of a Humans of New York approach. If you’ve experienced domestic violence (male or female!) and are brave enough to share and, maybe, make a difference, please contact me. You can use that email link, the contact form for my page, or private message me on Face Book. We’ll meet someplace and take a few simple portraits of you in nice natural light. I’ll do it digitally, I think in black and white. You’ll be in your normal clothes, whatever hair and make up you usually show the world. I hope the shoot itself doesn’t take more than 10 minutes out of your life. You’ll tell me whatever you care to share about the experience (I’ll use my phone to record your comment, or maybe you can email me before hand) and I’ll post the photo. I anticipate the format of the experience being something like First Name, Age, Job (maybe your city?) : and anything from one or two sentences to a paragraph or two about what happened. No names of the person who violated your trust.
I’m not sure how many folks will be strong enough to step forward, or how many I’ll be able to take, but, I’m willing to try if you are. You need to be reasonably sure the perpetrator won’t feel the need to exact a toll for your sharing of the violence with the world. Your safety comes first. Maybe we can get enough to do a gallery show, or a book. I don’t know where this will go. I do think they’ll be amongst the most important photos I’ve done.