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Lalage Snow’s photo project featuring portraits of British soldiers before, during and after their deployment in Afghanistan.

PRIVATE CHRIS MACGREGOR, IMAGE BY LALAGE SNOW

PRIVATE CHRIS MACGREGOR, IMAGE BY LALAGE SNOW

Private Chris MacGregor, 24

11th March, Edinburgh

Obviously I’ll miss my family but other than that I am going to miss my dogs more than anything. They are my de-stressors and keep me sane. I think I’ll miss TV too though. I try not to think about the worst case scenario.

19th June, Compound 19, Nad Ali (after the IED)

Most people get used to being away from home but I find it hard. It’s your fear that keeps you alive here. But I believe if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen and there’s nothing you can do about it. If the big man upstairs could do anything, there’d be no dead soldiers. They’d all be alive. It still hurts when you hear about a soldier dying. You think about what their families are going through. You ask what they died for and what we are achieving here. I am not sure anymore. That Afghan soldier losing his legs just now… I don’t know….

28th August, Edinburgh (Casevaced due to sustained knee injury from Iraq)

My legs just gave up. I think it was the weight – 135 pounds or something. I just had to accept, my body was telling me to give up as I had pushed it. I was telling it to go, it was telling me to stop. When squaddies come back they still have a lot of adrenaline and anger in them. I had to have anger management after Iraq. If I get like that now, I just go for a walk with the dogs. It is the best way to deal with it, instead of being all tense and ready to snap at folk. The first thing I did when I came back, apart from kissing and cuddling the misses and my bairn, was go for a massive walk with the dogs. I walked for miles and miles not caring where I stepped.

Photographer Lalage Snow embarked on an 8-month-long project titled We Are The Not Dead featuring portraits of British soldiers before, during and after their deployment in Afghanistan. Snow captures the innocent expressions of these people transformed into gaunt, sullen faces in less than a year. The three-panel juxtaposition allows the viewer to observe the physical changes a stationed soldier in a war zone goes through. Time is sped up for these men and women under the beating sun, amidst combat. Regardless of age, the kids that went in came back as adults with experiences beyond their years. As weathered and worn as their skin or sunken faces may appear, it’s their dilated eyes that are the most telling.
— Pinar: www.mymodernmet.com/profiles/blogs/lalage-snow-we-are-the-not-dead

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