If you are interested in having the State of Mind at your event, please contact email@example.com for prices.
Two years ago I started a ‘Scars’ project. I interviewed and photographed people based on internal scars (mental health) and external scars (Breast cancer, burn survivors etc). My passion and inspiration for this project was to showcase we all have a story and if people could share ‘their’ story, we could challenge ourselves on the judgment we place on each other by inspiring hope, courage and change. I feel we are all aware of the problems but as a society, we need to focus on the change and because of that I created a project called ‘State of Mind’. I discovered from interviewing many people regarding their internal scars, (mental health), I needed to create a project based on sharing stories of how mental health impacts all of us. I feel mental health is at the heart of everything we go through yet is has the least amount of compassion and the most judgment attached to it.
I wanted to do more than post these stories on social media, I want to show the viewer how mental health impacts all of us and there is no discrimination therefore I created a freestanding photography and storytelling exhibit, which consists of 6 – 7ft tall x 2 feet wide cubed shaped towers which features 8 people and their stories on each tower.
These stories are of depression, anxiety, addiction, postpartum depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, suicide, domestic violence, homelessness, self harm, grief, schizophrenia to name just a few. The focus of the State of mind is to help others realize there is healing and hope and to create conversations necessary to inspire change.
The State of Mind photography exhibit has been hosted by:
KPMG Edmonton, Edmonton Tower ,Manulife Place, Enbridge Centre, Winspear Centre - Crescendo Event, Edmonton City Hall , Fort Saskatchewan City Hall, Stand by me event as well as the Invisible but real event.
Jaaki Leslie Chatry - When I decided to be part of the State of Mind project, I was scared. Scared to let the world in on my secret. After it was out there, I had messages from complete strangers thanking me for sharing my story and telling me that they were inspired to keep getting up every morning. That has made it all so incredibly worth it. Life is good, I don’t know if I have ever been this happy before but for once I am not waiting for something to go wrong.
Michelle Schaffer - Lorna Dancey lets her soul speak, that is where the heart of her work comes from. It is why the photos and stories turn out the way they do. They are not just pictures, they are wordless stories of souls that have suffered, fought and won. She is a gift to those who need a voice, to the humans that need to be seen for who they are and not what they appear to be. Thank you for letting me be part of this amazing project, I cannot wait to see where this will go.
Barb Shuman - When Lorna first told me about the State of mind project, I just KNEW I had to be part of it as the final part of my healing journey. As a survivor of domestic violence for many years, I truly believe I endured the abuse to enable me to help educate and support others so they do not have to go through what I did. Domestic violence touches all cultures, genders, economic levels; no one is immune from it and yet there is still a strong negative stigma and a severe lack of education surrounding it. When Lorna talked to me about her idea for the photo she would take of me, I felt that it completely captured the silence that I and so many other people live/have lived in out of shame, fear, hope as well as many other factors that are hard for others to comprehend. It is through this project that I hope we can talk openly and honestly about all aspects of Domestic violence and end the silence once and for all. We cannot as a society stay silent any longer. The ripple effect on our world is insurmountable. When I went to see this display that Lorna created by total fluke it was showcased in the lobby of where I work. Words cannot describe how proud I was knowing that if my story was the reason that just ONE person leaves an abusive situation, then the first seed of change has been planted. The amount of joy this brought me is indescribable.
Len Rhodes President & CEO Edmonton Eskimo Football Club - I met Lorna Dancey and saw some of the great work she did for various social causes. After spending time speaking with her, I immediately felt her genuine approach and her unique angle to getting deep inside people’s souls through the power of her photography and storytelling. I allowed Lorna to capture my personal experience in dealing with the horrors of domestic violence when I was growing up. Lorna is one in a million.
Lauren Reid, Program Manager, Fort Saskatchewan Victim Services - We had a grand vision of bringing an impactful event to our community for Victims & Survivors of Crime Week, Lorna Dancey made that possible. Adapting her photography project to encompass the spirit of our community, she helped give a voice to victims of crime in our area. Through her amazing talent and genuine compassion she not only presented to Fort Saskatchewan a unique way to look at crime and trauma but also gave the people she showcased a meaningful experience. Lorna was such a pleasure to work with, and was a huge part of our Victims & Survivors Week being a huge success. We are not the only agency in the community who looks forward to working with Lorna again