Photographer and Artist Jamie House is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of this documentary photography. From the ongoing project ‘I am not the person you see’. To see Jamie’s body of work, click on any image.
Hello everyone, I’m Sam, and here is part of my story… Im 46, and have complex health conditions, including borderline and schizoid personality disorders, depression, anxiety, ednos, and body dysmorphia. Im a lot more than my diagnoses though, I’m also a Grey Witch, clairsentient, healer and dowser.
You see what I show you. I have may personas, many aspects, many masks. When you see me I’m having a good day. When you don’t, I’m probably being controlled by ‘evil head’, and hiding from the world.
I’ve endured sexual and emotional abuse from my parents, and others, and I work hard to overcome this damage on a daily basis. My physical health is rough too, fibromyalgia, M.E, chronic pain, and a few other nasties. BUT, I am more than these labels.
I am more than this battle. I am more… I model, I costume, I care for my animals, I help with a few charities and work to break the stigma, smash the silence around invisible illnesses.
I photograph, I paint, I write poetry, I sing. When I can, I help others. When I can’t, I help myself. Self-care is NOT selfish.
Together we can beat this. WE are NOT alone.
I am addicted to thinking. A ferocious appetite for knowledge fuels my fear of not knowing.
My mind ever expanding after tangential and sporadic thought processes. I think broad to coverall bases, to find the origin of problems, and to produce resolved solutions.
I like hidden complexity, the thought that design can cultivate curiosity. An object on appearance which conveys simplicity but cloaks a plethora of agonising moments of confusion. Choosing to avoid the obvious I get more enjoyment from of the controversial.
I am not afraid of pushing boundaries. I will challenge that which my views are opposed. Debating my opinion but consciously remain sensitive to my opposition. I wouldn’t say I was an activist for anything in particular but will tackle that which does not sit right. I latch onto any opportunity there is to ponder a thought.
I find motivation in the things that dissatisfy me, innovation would cease to exist otherwise. I thrive off someone telling me no. The intense satisfaction of proving them wrong only increases my drive.
I allow passion to take hold and let my heart steer me. I am a man of two halves but by no means half-assed. I take pride in my work where others don’t. Petrified of disappointing, I never say no.
I am one of four children; I have two older brothers and a younger sister.
I was born in Plymouth in 1964 but I have lived all over the country due to my father’s career.
I was terrible at school, due in part to the fact that I am not that bright but also because we didn’t live in any one home for very long and I went to six or seven different schools.
I became an Apprentice Coppersmith in a private Shipyard called Vosper Thornycroft in Southampton when I was sixteen.
Left Southampton when I was eighteen, again Dad was promoted and returned to my home town of Plymouth and went into the Dockyard.
Left at twenty-eight, became a Policeman and when I was about forty I became an Actor.
I have had roles on Tv and in Film, Game of Thrones my highlight to date.
I am now retired from the Police Force and pursue my acting career as well as my entrepreneurial quest to build my own ‘Man Brand’ called Lawlessmen.
This body of work explores what it is to be a human being and what we feel, the timeless aspects that do not change. The photographic portraits in this series are about stories that people don’t see everyday, love, loss, the ambivalence, the ambiguity, and the silences that lie beneath the surface.
These photographs have an emotional complexity that feels unsettling at times. Unfinished stories becoming unveiled. I want to show the hardships and joys people don’t speak of. The hidden things that are beyond words, to show the stories people don’t always speak of.
This project is something beyond social media, internet searches, this is real, raw, unflinching true stories that push the limits of perception and the human condition.
Age 58. From an early age I had major problems in life due to my dear old mother turning to drink when she found out my father was having an affair, growing up with that was horrid, never feeling the love from the two most important people in my life, when I got to the age of 18 I joined the Fire Service to the total disgust of my father who wanted me to join the Royal Marines, I was so proud to become a fireman, when my father first saw me he looked me up and down as I stood in front of him in my new uniform, and all he said was ‘ Told you to join the Royal Marines ‘ that finished me, my heart was broken yet again, later in life I found a new love, my first wife, we had 6 years together before she was killed in a car crash, a drunk driver hit her head on, she was gone, telling our daughter was a hard thing to do, probably the hardest thing I have had to do, until a few years later when my little girl was attacked and almost killed by a man who has never been caught to this day, then ten years ago my back went all wrong for me, four slipped discs, Sciatica, the pain of the last ten years have made me suicidal so many time I have lost count, but as I know look at myself in the mirror, I think ‘ at least you cant say you’ve been beaten yet, the past will never beat me, the knocks in life have taught me well, how to survive the pain of loss, hurt, mental health, physical health, depression and so on, Gloria Gaynor said, ‘ I will survive’ and even with out the help of our so called God, so will I.
Where everything was once so planned and expected. When life was so wonderfully routined, rutted and safe. Where I was, and not anymore.
Now I’m at half a century and once again in a life of change and challenge. My midlife crisis, has been based on a task to self, to take control of the risks to my mortality.
Running is such a complex and joyous experience. Becoming now ritualistic. Early mornings, dark on the onset, so that I can experience the salutation moment of the day break and a potential sunrise in the middle of my run. Planed so that I’m running East towards my finish. My legs hurt, my brain wrestles with preservation of me. But I run, and it is always glorious.
I’m the engine, that I’ve made better. Not fantastic every time. Those damn hills.
I’ll not be defeated though. By the hills, or by the challenges I have to face.
Nathaniel S (Featured image)
Work had been tough, life had been hard, and disappointment had eaten into my daily life.
Something had to change and delving into the cause of my misfortune was the only way forwards.
Sitting down on Dartmoor, deeply upset by the last few months of stress. I prayed to God for his guidance.
This is the message: “You are deeply selfish and if you don’t change your circumstance will not improve!”
Changing my attitude, life began to get better. Clients started paying up front for my services; people around me became more interested in talking to me, as I genuinely liked listening to them and their stories, problems and goals.
The moral of my story is ask for guidance whatever your belief system.
Delve into the reasons you are unhappy, if you are deeply selfish as I was, then you need to do something about it…
All images © Jamie House
By Jamie House