Refocusing The Lens – Unconditional love

PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.

The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world. Unconditional love,  By Aidan

Artist’s Statement

Bolt is the best dog in the world. All dog owners say that but he is truly the kindest, most gentle puppy who only has love in his heart. He wouldn’t hurt anyone and is always trying to please the people he encounters. His only flaw is that he loves to bark. In my darkest times he would bring a smile to my face. I can recall one particular visit he made to me while I was in the hospital- he was so excited to see me. I remember going to bed so content knowing that my little pup was happy to see [...] continue the story

Refocusing The Lens – The ever-judging eye

PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.

The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world. The ever-judging eye, By Aidan

Artist’s Statement

When I attended the day hospital program at St. Joseph’s Hospital I would usually walk home through the High Park Zoo. I have always been extremely curious by the emu; they are a majestic flightless bird that also seems to have a lot of anger inside them. Their piercing orange eyes are what strike me the most. These menacing eyes represent how society tends to view those struggling with their mental wellness. Always judging, staring intently, with a passive aggressive attitude. Mental illness strikes many different types of people and these individuals would be better served by a society that treats [...] continue the story

Refocusing The Lens – Scattered dreams

PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.

The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world. Scattered dreams, By Aidan

Artist’s Statement

Gambling is and has been an inherent part of my life. Whether it can be blamed on genetics (my Grandfather was an avid gambler and actually won the second top prize in Lotto Super 7), addiction, or a way to reduce boredom and depression has yet to be determined. Gambling addiction is a serious problem that affects about 3% of Canadians and can be a leading cause of depression, other mental health issues, and suicide. Gambling and mental health are tightly intertwined. There are high highs and low lows. Winning $2000 is a definite high while losing all of your ProLine tickets [...] continue the story

Refocusing The Lens – Trapped

PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.

The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world. Trapped, By Aidan

Artist’s Statement

This antique elevator was the last thing I saw before my freedom was taken from me. I remember being very scared when I entered the elevator to visit the mental health offices at St. Josephs Health Centre. I was admitted to the mental health ward (7M) after my visit with the psychologist there. This elevator represents the frightening experience I had with my mental health episode and how trapped I felt by it all. I am thankful that I no longer have to see this ancient elevator as I am now an outpatient, evidence that I am moving forward on my journey and [...] continue the story

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