In his series, the Veteran Art Project, photographer Devin Mitchell aims to show us the real person that lies behind the stoic men and women we see in military uniforms. “The military community has expressed their interest in using my art to communicate how many of them feel to be living double lives while serving in the military,” Mitchell told Mic. “People who have never served have shown interest in knowing more about the diversified aspects of what causes veterans to feel that way.”
One place this hit closest to home for Mitchell was the military’s — and country’s — tenuous relationship with the gay community. As a gay man himself, he has been troubled by the ongoing court battles which affect men and women like him, including many who are fighting to defend freedoms which they do not have.
“One photo that really speaks to me the most is the picture depicting Joshua Zitting and his husband Patrick Lehmann. It reminds me of how unfair it is that this man can serve while enjoying all of this constitutional rights as an American, while other men and women similar to him cannot in other parts of the country, due in part to recent decisions such as the one made by circuit judge Jeffrey Sutton. Judges like him are blind in my eyes. Maybe pictures like this will help him see better.”
Keep up with Devin’s military uniforms project on Instagram.