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Late last summer, photographer Devin Mitchell began traveling around the United States to document the various styles of life of veterans through semi-surreal portraits for his thesis project.
would connect with veterinarians, enter their homes, and let them choose their props, costumes, poses, and presented them in the photos, the most recent of which represent life with the disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.
“It’s an intimate experience every time,” said Mitchell to BuzzFeed News. “Sometimes people make me dinner, sometimes I’ll spend time meeting their parents, sitting in their kitchens, talk to them about life.”
As he continued to produce the images, Mitchell said he realized how therapeutic the process of taking these pictures was for the community. He called the series theVeteran Vision Project.
“There are two sides to this series, “Mitchell said. “Awareness of the veteran community spreads, the challenges they face during reintegration into society. But it also works as a therapy for subjects. … It makes visible what they feel.”
a photo of the new series.
After taking thousands of pictures of the veterans in their daily life, 27-year-old photographer was approached by a veteran to do a series on suicide and military sexual trauma. BuzzFeed News is the first feature of this series.
“From the beginning of the project, that was my mission for veterans say what they want through my photographs,” Mitchell told BuzzFeed News. “Many people who make projects veterans just want to take a particular angle. I want to explore all subjects, all of darkness.”
a photo of the new series.
An annual study on military sexual assault by the US Army recently she found that about 26,000 men and women are sexually assaulted in the military. About 86% of them are not reported.
military sexual trauma (MST) and suicidal tendencies among active military and veterans are being closely linked.
In 2012, a study It is showing that was released about 22 US veterans kill themselves each day, or about one every 65 minutes. Many of the photos deal with this statistic.
“I think I can safely say that every person in the military has been affected by suicide,” Mitchell said. “Whether it is something they have tried or considered, or has impacted someone close to them.”
A photo of the new series.
“This was healing for me because suicide is something to fight with” Jared Comini (pictured below) in a video project . “No [commit suicide] because of my family, and my friends who do not get to live. I’m still going for it.”
Marine veteran Brad Ivanchan, co-curator of Mitchell, which have been used in the first photo, said: “This is what war looks like when done for many people.”
“I do not want to be another number of service members who have killed themselves,” said Comini.
Mitchell said he is planning to continue the project to raise awareness about suicide and military MST turn the project into a book, which is financing the kickstarter. The profits will go to humanitarian aid projects.