Over the past 18 months, our We Swear campaign has taken the urgent need for mental health research to the public like never before.
And underpinning the campaign have been the striking images highlighting the many faces of frustration that too many feel about the status quo in mental health. These images of celebrities and MQ supporters have become synonymous with a demand for better, in a world where there is a lack of understanding, trial and error treatments and too little hope for mental illness.
Creating a campaign that shows real feelings behind the headlines was crucial, and we needed to do it right. We have been working with photographer Matt Holyoak to produce real, empowering and emotive shots. Matt’s passion for the issue and his creative vision led to an incredible gallery of images which define We Swear and have captured the public’s attention and support.
We’re delighted that Matt has agreed to be the Creative Ambassador for MQ, throwing his support behind the campaign as well as the research that we fund.
Why Matt is supporting MQ:
“It’s outrageous that 1 in 4 people are affected by mental illness each year, yet so few are getting the right support, or early enough. I’ve decided to support MQ as I feel it’s time we took this on and did something about it. Their work to fund much-needed research offers hope to those affected, and can help improve our understanding of mental illness, develop more effective treatments and get people support sooner - hopefully one day making mental illness preventable. MQ is a charity that is actually making a difference.”
Matt lives between London and New York, and has photographed major campaigns for Braun, Diesel, Gillette, Sky and Nike. He regularly contributes to a range of publications including Vanity Fair, Another Magazine, British Vogue, Empire, Harpers Bazaar, L’Uomo Vogue, Net-A-Porter, Rolling Stone and Interview Magazine. In 2018 Matt was chosen to be the official portrait photographer for the BAFTA film awards - this work featured extensively in British GQ.
Matt's most recent accolade was being commissioned to photograph the official portraits for the christening of Prince Louis of Cambridge, after photographing The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh in 2017, in celebration of their 70th Wedding Anniversary.
Matt is a prolific supporter of many charities, including Cancer Research, Children In Need, Haiti ‘Are You Here’, RNLI and White Ribbon.
His love of film has led Matt to create his first photographic book of portraits, featuring the world’s most legendary movie directors and personal stories written about them by the people who know them best.
Behind the scenes of We Swear...
Behind the scenes of Matt's We Swear photoshoot with Greg James, host of the Radio 1 Breakfast Show
Last updated: 23 August 2018