My name is Lucy Campbell and I have suffered with M.E for the past fifteen years. I am a photographer and am currently looking to take portraits of people who also suffer with this nasty and misunderstood illness.
To give you more of an idea about my work and myself, I studied at the prestigious Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and graduated with first class honours in 2009. Since then my work has been featured as part of an exhibition in The Photographers Gallery in London, I was short listed for the Bar Tur award in 2011, and I have continued to work on my personal projects, along with freelancing for well-established magazines and companies during this time.
I myself had a very difficult time when I first became ill at the age of eleven, as I am very sure most of us did, and so in turn feel very passionate about helping others through this in my work. I also have Crohns Disease and so invisible illnesses, and peoples reactions to them, is an every day battle for me, even after fifteen years.
This project has been something that I have wanted to do for a very long time. It is a subject that I feel very strongly about, particularly how we are perceived. For this reason, I hope to be able to give M.E and its sufferers a voice through my photography and to help in our fight for understanding. I’ll need your help to do this!
I would love to talk to and possibly meet with others who have M.E on all different levels, so I can learn about your experiences, as I am fully aware that everyone’s experience of the illness is completely different. I really do feel that people do not understand, or are just not aware, of how bad this illness can be. Particularly for those who suffer with severe cases of M.E.
For this reason, I also want this project to be a kind of collaboration with the people who are participating, so they could possibly help with how/where they are photographed for example. My initial idea and focus would be on the home lives of people suffering with this debilitating illness. The reason for this is because for me, this is where the suffering can be seen the most; by our loved ones, at home, where others do not witness it.
This project will develop as I get to know people and of your experiences more. I hope to start by hearing from anyone who is interested in participating in this very important project via email, and then we can go from there. I would also very much love to hear an account of your experience of the illness as this will help in the development of the project and may even be used within it in some way, along with the portraits. Of course this will only happen with your permission. I feel this could potentially be a very important element particularly as this illness is often not very visible. I’m sure we have all heard the standard ‘but you don’t look ill?’ before. That ol’ chestnut!
If you feel you could help me and want to join me in my fight against M.E and the misconceptions of its sufferers, please please do get in touch with me. I am very much hoping that this project will open peoples eyes to what it is truly like to live with M.E.
Lots of love
Lucy lives in London and would particularly welcome inquirers from the London area. You can email her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org