Blood Generation: Documenting a Generation Born Into War

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All images by Stuart Miller. Used with permission.

Photographer Stuart Miller is based in Australia and shoots advertising and portrait work. Stuart picked up the craft after receiving a film SLR, and he was influenced by his father. “Technically, he showed me the beautiful and interesting things that could be achieved, it intrigued me how many versions of one scene could be created, just by how I used the camera,” says Stuart. “This got me hooked.”

After finding him on Behance, we were really taken by his Blood Generation series, in which he collaborated with Artist Taloi Havini. Taloi invited Stuart to come and photograph a series of portraits dedicated to a tribe of young people known as the “Blood Generation.”

That moniker is given to the generation of folks born into war– triggered from external interests in mining and sustained by acts of local political self-determination. “In 1990, the people of Bougainville lived under air, sea, and military blockade for ten years with a reported loss of twenty thousand lives,” says Stuart. “Bougainville’s indigenous landowners remain disheartened, displaced, and dissatisfied. The issue remains unresolved and we ask ourselves, ‘Who is responsible for the Blood Generation?'”

Back in his early 20s, he was told something very special that helped solidify his love of portraiture. “The subject told me, ‘Getting my portrait with you has felt like drinking a fine glass of red wine,'” recalls Stuart. “This firstly felt like a huge compliment, but also made me realize how important the relationship was between the photographer and the subject.” Stuart relishes that relationship and he believes that it opens opportunity for interesting, genuine moments to be captured.

“Theres nothing more I like to photograph than people. Portraiture in particular.” says Stuart.

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