Photographer Creates Emotive Images to Help Cope with Depression


What does severe depression look like in photographs? The work of photographer Christian Hopkins may offer a clue. The 20-year-old photographer has been battling Major Depression (AKA clinical depression) for the past four years, and many of his photographs are a reflection of the dark thoughts and feelings swirling around in his mind.

Hopkins is currently registered as a freshman studying biochemistry in college, but has been taking a medical leave of absence in order to deal with his depression.

One year into his struggles, Hopkins picked up camera in order to use photography as a way to cope. He has been doing photography on and off since then.

“I was never all that good with words. That why I take pictures,” he tells us.

Hopkins has never taken a photography class in his life, and his photographs are simply a medium through which he can express himself. “This is just a hobby. A camera, a body, and a mind. Nothing else,” he says.
















Many of his photographs were once shared online through his Flickr account, Capt. Truffles. After a severe bout with depression recently, he wiped his account and took his photographs offline. Some of the shots continue to float around on the web, through various website and through social media.

Hopkins says he’s fine with remnants of his work existing, since they may help someone going through similar struggles: “If anything, I hope I helped someone with my photography. They’re me. Perhaps they are you as well. Maybe they’re neither. Maybe they’re we.”

Image credits: Photographs by Christian Hopkins and used with permission

  • Anthony Harden

    The kid has real talent and a wonderful eye for this. Clinical depression is a terrible beast to deal with. I wish him all the best on his path.

  • Christian DeBaun

    Unsettling, and excellent series.

  • Kyle Petersen

    Extremely raw and powerful work, completely devoid of pretense. I really hope he is doing better.

  • Henri

    These are very well planned and done, I love them!

  • fweakout

    Reddit saved your carreer!

  • Matthew Wagg

    Those struck a chord with me. I suffered with clinical depression and he has nailed the feelings.

  • Melissa Ladyman

    What beautiful images. Incredible that from such suffering such expression can be

  • liz

    amazing work….very setteling to think that a young boy, or anyone for that matter has to suffer in such a raw level…I sincerely hope he is doing better and that he can fight and beat this beast that is haubtibg him constantly….all my love for what its worth

  • Michael

    Amazing Pictures

  • three_fitty

    These are so powerful. For all their artistic merit (and there is plenty) the image of him slumped in the bath give me the shivers. I fear for what he might have done. I hope he can fight his deamon’s.

  • Clarissa

    A beautiful soul that now many can get a glimpse of. Thank you, my dear.

  • Eduardo Mendoza

    Melissa Ladyman, some of us who suffer from this, are afraid to show our feelings and thoughts, cause people gets away from us when we do that. I made some images while there wasn’t a chance to leave home, but I tried to go the opposite, fighting this thing looking at the beauty of life around me. These images are shocking, and I really hope Christian is doing a lot better. Chris: there’s a chance to escape from hell, fight hard for your life, great work!

  • Dillon Frylinck

    But>> I logged into flickr almost daily to see if he put any new ones up.
    I hope he’s ok