Insecurities afflict everybody. What perhaps sets apart one individual from the next is how each person deals with these flaws or perceived imperfections. We are all struggling with some kind of insecurity at some point. Taken positively, we are able to overcome our flaws, transforming issues to build on character. Taken negatively, we can withdraw into stagnation, impeding any potential for growth. Most of the time however, insecurity is unwarranted and is a cause of more stress than anything else. The constantly shifting nature of life is to recognize that stability today, may be turned upside down tomorrow. To live with insecurity is to recognize we all carry some kind of handicap. That is the most liberating thought to embrace.
Photographer Steve Rosenfield‘s What I Be Project, sought to stare these issues in the face by having his subjects use some text to disclose the insecurities that he or she grapples with everyday. The catchphrase used by the Rosenfield is “Building Security through Insecurity.” Literally, each subject wears his or her insecurity on her face or arm, publicly proclaiming their personal stigmas or complex before Rosenfield’s camera.
“It’s all about honesty,” says Rosenfield, “Each person that takes part in the project is extremely courageous. They are putting their insecurities out in the open, and exposing a side of themselves that nobody has seen before.”
Each subject was asked to complete the pharse “I am not my…” by stating their personal issue. For Rosenfield, photographing these men and women with their struggles made public was totally empowering for them. By helping them acknowledge the demons they deal with, they are able to liberate themselves, not allowing these issues to define them.
“[The purpose of the project] is to spread awareness on what people go through due to society’s paved roads. These are serious issues that some of us can live with, but most battle on a day to day basis. I encourage every viewer to look at each image and put yourself in the individuals shoes. By allowing yourself to feel what they feel, you might realize something you’ve never noticed before.”
See the therapeutic What I Be Project here.