Photographer, journalist, and film-maker Lalage Snow has captured the physical toll a deployment takes on a solider in a series of before, during, and after photographs. The Telegraph reports that Snow’s portrait series ‘We Are The Not Dead’ features images and quotes from members of the 1st Battalion the Royal Regiment of Scotland before they were sent to Afghanistan, during their deployment, and after they had returned home.
The words that accompany the pictures make them even more powerful, as viewers match the emotions in the text to what they see projected on the soldiers’ faces.
Above, Private Matthew Hodgson, age 18, describes his experiences:
11th March, Edinburgh: “Aye I am looking forward to it now that we are going but I am scared of losing my best mates more than myself. Its the casualties that I am afraid of. There are going to be so many.”
19th June, Compound 19, Nad Ali, after the IED: “It was really frightening. You see the IED blast and you wonder who got hit. It wasn’t a nice thing to see. It dawns on you how real it all is and then you try not to think about it. You try not to think about it at all. That patrol was pointless and now an Afghan soldier is missing his legs and for what?”
12th October, Edinburgh: “You try and explain what it was like where you were but people have not got a clue. The food — not getting a proper meal or sleep. And you are just drained after a patrol. Absolutely drained. And it was pretty scary at times. When you are in contact at first it’s just ‘get down’. Afterwards it hits you… ‘I was getting shot at, that was close’. At the time you don’t think about it you do what you have to. Now I am home I find I get frustrated at smaller things. I get wound up. I never used to though.”
You can view a slideshow of the portraits and quotes on Snow’s site and click through to see a selection of the images: