Many of these pictures depict a “self portrait” from an individual with mental illness. They touch upon different traits like loving music or protecting family. Some felt like they worked hard, like a donkey, while others felt defined by their relationships, especially their children. These individuals expressed not wanting to be defined by their mental illness and expressed that through their self portraits.
Three individuals with mental illness illustrate how they are perceived by the community from the outside. Scroll over each image to see how they personally understand themselves. As you can see, the experience of mental illness is different for each individual. Some feel like their mental illness is apparent, stigmatizing them as people assume they are dangerous. Others feel like their mental illness is invisible and they have to hide it in order to avoid stigma.
These illustrations are part of a workshop hosted at Dinani secondary school that focused on emotional awareness. It was part of a broader conversation about mental wellbeing that sought to demystify mental illness and mental healthcare to the students.
Nursing students illustrate how individuals with mental illness are viewed by the community. Scroll over each image to see how the nursing students imagine individuals with mental illness could imagine themselves through access to education and healthcare.