“Hope” is the thing with feathers -

That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -"

Emily Dickinson

When a person leaves a violent or controlling relationship they have often lost their core identity. I Am is an opportunity to transform, to witness a new identity emerging.


Participant's Stories

Back Story

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

BJP 365 Winner 2021 Abuse in the home and church.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

The next morning when I got up for school there was blood all over the living room.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 A senior police officer but violence behind closed doors. 

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

He waited until he was 80 to speak about his childhood

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 I look angry here, I am angry.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Having a successful acting career does not protect a woman

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I have an M.A.  I am a proud black woman, mother, sister, friend.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 After trauma we may heal and grow.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

With his boots and fists he broke my back.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

We are all transforming. It is part of life.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

His father murdered his mother and sister.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 I want to be around others like me that understand the codes of domestic abuse and racial trauma.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Transgender people experience intimate partner abuse

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 It's my choice now

what colour I paint, what clothes I want to wear

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Life changing injuries, she became a reiki master to heal others.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Photograph this scar here on my neck.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

It is my belief we can all heal from our past.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I think often as women we are taught and told not to be angry.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 A long unhappy marriage, her charity just won a national award. 

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Runs a charity for survivors of domestic abuse.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

It didn’t escalate until I fell pregnant at 18.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Holocaust survivor and psychotherapist. 40 year sentence of abuse in marriage. 

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Physiotherapist. Now living abroad.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I am on a journey to loving myself again

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

My wheelchair can make me a target for certain men.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

We talked about reframing the gaze and how portraiture isn't just about being looked at – it's about looking right back.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

 My baby kept me going through some very difficult years.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

She is highly educated.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

My boundaries.
My body.
My decisions.
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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Nurse. Education and learning was priceless to make a change.


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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Father, survivor.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I've kept the battle hidden put on a brave face, put on my mask so no one would know.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Motivational speaker for abuse and a survivor.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I am confronting something so personal through the lens of someone I have only just met.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

Cancer nurse.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

I need to remain hidden.

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

A true warrior

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I Am, portraits, domestic violence, domestic abuse, intimate partner violence, SafeLives, SICK! Festival, the Duchess of Cornwall

A harrowing story about a daughter. 

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...and the 7 women who had to withdraw for personal safety

........and those who are in hiding with witness protection who shared a story, but could not have a portrait taken.

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