Aria Watson, an 18-year-old student at Clatsop Community College in Oregon, is going viral after creating a photo series featuring comments Donald Trump has made about women in the years before he was elected president. In a series titled #SignedByTrump, Watson told Buzzfeed News that the below photos were part of her final project in an Introduction to Photography class.
“The election was going on at the time, and I felt very strongly about the candidates and their views, so I decided to mix my political opinions with my photography,” she said. “I never really cared for or understood politics, but this year was different. Although I was two weeks too young to actually vote, I was old enough to see what was happening and learn about it.”
Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton won Watson’s home state of Oregon with 1,002,106 votes, but ultimately lost the 2016 presidential election.
“When Trump beat Clinton, my heart shattered,” she said. “I knew I had to create something different. All I wanted from these photos was to help people realize who Donald Trump really is, and I just want to feel heard.”
She continued, “I know most people are set on their opinions about Trump, but I just hope one person sees ‘#SignedByTrump’ and it opens their eyes.”
Watson initially posted the photos to Facebook and Instagram, but both platforms removed them. When she posted the series to Tumblr, she gained more than 50,00 notes in one day and has since acquired nearly 100,000. While she managed to keep the models anonymous, Watson does reveal that the subjects are friends and family, and that one image is a self-portrait.
“Over the past few days, I’ve gotten messages that have brought me to tears,” she said. “To everyone who has supported me and “#SignedByTrump,” don’t let anyone silence you. Don’t be afraid to speak up about what you are passionate about.”
Check out a few of her photos below and see her entire collection here.
Warning: some of the images are NSFW.Aria Watson Aria Watson Aria Watson Aria Watson