Our instructors created a space where all of us reflected on being an immigrant. This part of the Camp was intense because I was able to get to know the other participants’ stories of how they or their parents came to the United States. Although their stories and hindrances were different from mine, their families and mine brought their dreams and ganas to fight for a better life.
The Photo Camp reminded me that the 11 million undocumented immigrants and I do belong in this society, and that there are WAY more people who want us here and want us to live in peace. It reminded me that in fact, I am American. So when I took pictures of the places and of the people that shaped me into who I am, it felt different because their portrait wasn’t just a portrait– that image was a part of my story. All of a sudden, my home, my neighborhood, my parents, my job, were still ordinary but they were beautiful and powerful. Photography was a quick reminder of how fierce my story and everyone in it are.