The harrowing physical and emotional scars of people affected by gun violence.

Bringing the gun violence survivors to the forefront of the debate.

Welcome to Mamamia’s art endeavour, the Voulez-Vous Project. Every week we celebrate emerging artists, designers, illustrators, creators and women who knit using their vaginas. (Kidding. Maybe.) Our aim: to help the internet become a slightly more beautiful, captivating, or thought-provoking place by making art accessible.

To find out more about the Voulez-Vous project, click here. Click here to see all the previous Voulez-Vous posts.

12,968. That’s how many people have been affected directly by gun violence this year alone in the United States.

Almost 13 thousand people. In four and a half months.

We hear about gun violence all the time. But photographer Kathy Shorr is giving a voice to those affected by guns, but largely forgotten about – the survivors.

In her series called SHOT, she’s aiming to photograph 100 survivors of gun violence and showcase their scars  – physical and emotional – in a photographic documentary.

survivors of gun violence
Karina: Shot when she was 16 years old, while standing outside of her high school talking with friends. A car drove by the group and fired one shot. She was the unintended victim of gang retaliation. Aurora, CO, 2010. Image via Kathy Shorr.

Shorr says her focus is to bring to light the lives who have been changed by the trauma of gun violence.

“Those who die from gun violence can only address the issue as statistics and memories of lives that were. The SHOT project focuses on the living whose lives have been forever changed by the emotional and physical trauma of gun violence. They are present in their portraits, words and voices and are not able to be dismissed as statistics who have passed on.”

Related: To the people who say Australia needs to relax its gun laws….

So far, she has 60 survivors. For most, Shorr aimed to photograph these people in the exact spot the shooting occurred – for some of these victims, this was their first time returning to that place. Shorr is now fundraising costs for travel to bring more of these stories to light. To donate to the crowd-funding campaign, click here.

A few of these brave people and their stories are featured below. Please note, many of the stories are hard to read and incredibly difficult to fathom. But it’s important we bring these people and their experiences to light.

For more on the project, you can visit Kathy’s website here and her blog here.

Do you know an artist (or are YOU an artist) who creates beautiful or thought-provoking work and whom you think should be featured on Mamamia’s Voulez-Vous Project? Send an email to [email protected]