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A Self Portrait Brief

2nd Year University Brief

With my self portrait I chose to represent my mental health in a slightly abstract way. I struggle with anxiety and depression, and I've heard on numerous occasions that if I hadn't said that I have mental health problems people wouldn't be able to tell. I come across as an outgoing person that is quite relaxed and calm. However, due to past experiences mental health is something I have struggled with for the past 5-6 years.

I've always felt like no one can understand how I feel, or how to handle my breakdowns or panic attacks and I can never explain how I feel or how to help. Sometimes it makes me feel trapped - I can't find the cure because I can't explain any of it. I've spoken to numerous counsellors, short term they've helped. But slowly I can feel that darkness creep towards the forefront of my mindset.

I've tried to represent this within my self portrait, the trapped feeling, the darkness, the uncertainty of when this is going to stop, and almost this persona that I give off to hide the true emotions underneath.

I strayed away from my usual film camera, or film camera editing and instead used a normal DSLR. I chose to edit it with a high contrast and quite a high clarity and texture, to get the creases within the plastic bag detailed to represent the struggle. Everything is clear and crisp, to juxtapose my unclear, messy mind.

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