A small sign of hope and rebellion amid the destruction of Sinjar, 2017

Visiting with kids at a camp in Mosul and walking down a Sinjar street

Most of what I knew about Iraq seemed hopeless and violent, but I thought I might be wrong about that.

It was in Cairo during the Arab Spring of 2011 where I first fell in love with the people and complexity of the Middle East region. In June 2017 I made my way to Iraq, and this website is dedicated to the photographs and stories about the experience and wonderful people I met.

What's been lost in the wake of ISIS and who are the displaced people? What does it mean to suffer unimagiable horror and still find hope? What kind of help is still needed? And why is everyone so generous and friendly, and yet so quick to fight each other? These were just some of the questions I had. And since it's hard to really understand anything from a safe distance, I decided to go there instead.

My initial trip over three weeks in July was spent visiting homes and large encampments in the Kurdish and northern Arab regions of Iraq, including Kirkuk, Sinjar and Mosul. I wanted meet strange new people, make some photographs, and learn new things for the purpose of creating meaningful stories that people may enjoy and benefit from.

THANK YOU!

I want to extend a very special thank you to Sue O'Connor and the Medair team for all of their support throughout this project. Medair is a humantiarian aid NGO helping vulnerable people in the Middle East and throughout the world. Please check them out and help where you can.

Thank you to some of my friends and collaborators: Ryan Fritzsche for video production; Rachel Dowd for press and storytelling support; Justin Sanders for copy editing; and Michelle Zassenhaus for helping me with photo editing. Please note that unless otherwise stated, all of the thoughts and opinions found on this site are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of other individuals or organizations.


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