Commitment | NC

The lifeblood of a documentary photographer is the hope that photographs can spark conversation.

The dream is that those images can even promote social change. Marriage and love should be celebrated, and the laws restricting it should never pass. Amendment One flies in the face of justice, civil rights and common decency that human beings have long striven for.

In September 2011 Justin Cook began a documentary project photographing long-term, committed same sex couples in their homes, and interviewing them to learn their stories, struggles and joys. He hoped to show the public that these families are normal people with real love and real lives, so better decisions could be made on May 8, 2012 when Amendment One will be voted on.

Outrage over the amendment was prevalent and he was not alone. Lissa Gotwals and her group of acclaimed photographers, CLACK, began a similar project, "LOVE FOR ALL." For one weekend she and members of her group, including photographers Maria Brubeck, Kim Walker, Jessie Gladin-Kramer, Alex Maness, Jon Gardiner, and Joanna Welborn, gathered together and made striking images of NC families, couples and individuals that will be affected if the amendment passes, including straight couples in domestic partnerships. The CLACK photographers did another shoot in February 2012, and produced several multimedia pieces and a poster series for this project.

Mimi Schiffman is a multimedia producer pursuing a master's degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her videos are part of a documentary project she is producing on marriage equality for her thesis, but they were first published by the Huffington Post. UNC Chapel Hill Journalism School alum Margaret Cheatham Williams produced her video "As It Comes" during her undergraduate classes. She is currently interning at Mediastorm in New York City. Schiffman's and Williams' outrage over Amendment One led them to contribute their video projects to Commitment | NC.

We all decided to partner and make COMMITMENT | NC a portal for images and stories that speak out against Amendment One. We are excited about this collaborative experience, so we invite you to make yourself at home, see the faces of those affected by the amendment and read what they have to say.

Please check back here for more updates in the coming months, including portraits and voices.

DONATE to us to fund the project!

For more information about Justin visit

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Contact Justin for collaboration at: or Lissa at

All content Copyright 2011 COMMITMENT | NC and the respective photographers

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