A picture is worth a thousand words

Students select photos on an assigned topic, attach short descriptions or stories and publish them on a visual platform where all participants can be inspired to interact, evaluate and contribute with more photographs and comments or stories.

Module 6 (2):Portraits and Identity

                             Portraits and Identity in black and white

Dear students from France, Greece, Turkey, Poland,

You can write your lovely stories below the headings.You can always see the photo-portraits and instructions on module 6: (1)


5. Frida Kahlo

I'm Frida Kahlo. I was born on July 7, 1910. For me it's the most beautiful date, which I have ever imagined. It's a time when  a new, Mexico, after the Mexican revolution was born.
To be honest I'm a strong women. You can think that I'm also brazen. Whatever, I don't care. I know who I am and I know what I want. Life wasn't nice for me. When I was six I got sick of polio, but it's just the  beginning. Then I was a victim of a traffic accident, because of that I went through 35 painful operations and as a result I can't  have  children. My marriage is like a rollercoaster. There are arguments, marriage affairs, a divorce, and a remarriage. But one thing I know is a really true love and I don't regret anything.
I'm an artist, exactly painter. My pictures show my life . I'm not afraid to paint outrageous things. This is exactly how life is for me. In my opinion people who are saying that they don't like my works, are coward. They don't want to face with problems, which I present in my pictures.
I think it's time for me.
I'm dying.
I can feel it.
But I'm not afraid.

Her last diary entry read: "I hope the end is joyful - and I hope never to return - Frida.". (by Laura from Poland)



It’s a wonderful day.

My name is Frida Kahlo. I was born on  6 July, 1907.I’m from Mexico.  I’m a painter but I am different from other painters. People say that my art is surrealist but I don’t agree  with them. Everybody knows me as single-browed and wooden-leg ged woman but I am different and for all that I stay strong. For all my life every bad things happened to me because of that I turned to art. I started to draw. In all my work I drew myself because I need to tell myself to people. The biggest reason to make me draw was my big accident. When I was 18 years old, I had a terrible bus accident. After the accident I passed my all life between hospitals and doctors. I had as many as operations mainly on my back, my right leg and my right foot.

BUT I never give up and I paint myself because  I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best.


( By Aylin Öcal from Turkey)


I am Frida Kahlo ,an artist .I was born on  July 6,1907 in Coyocoan ,Mexico City .I grew up in the family home where I was born .My father Wihelm was a German photographer who had immigrated to Mexico where he met and married my mother Matilde .I have two older sisters ,Matilde and Andriana .Around the age of 6 I contracted polio which caused me to be bedridden for nine months .In 1922 I enrolled at the renowned National Preparatoly School .I was one of the few female students to attend the school .That same year I met the Mexican muralist Diego Rivera. I told a friend that I would someday have Rivera’s baby. In 1925,I had a car accident which left me limbed, disabled and with terrible pains all my life. I reconnected witch Rivera In 1928. He encouraged me to start art work and we began a relationship. We married the next year. I often followed Rivera on his commission .In 1930 we lived in San Francisco California .While  I never considered myself a Surealist I befriended one of primary surrealist figures . Andre Breton in 1938 that same year I had a major exhibition at New York City Gallery .In 1939 I lived in Paris for a time .There I met  Marchal Duchamp and Pablo Picaso .Regarding my paintings I honestly admit that I never painted dreams or nightmares .I painted my own reality . Deeply depressed I was hospitalized in April 1954 because of poor health .I died on July 13 at my beloved Blue House. (by Vasiliki  from Greece)

My name is Frida Kahlo, I was born on July 6, 1907 , in Mexico. Throughout my life, I achieved a great international popularity since I was influenced by Realism, Symbolism and Surrealism. Many of my works of art are self-portraits, which express my pain and sexuality. My grandfather was also a painter and goldsmith. My parents’ marriage wasn’t so happy. They got 4 daughters including me. I remained  closer to my father from an early age. At the age of six I contracted polio which left my right leg  thinner than the left. As a girl I participated in boxing and many other sports and I had also been a witness in violent armed struggles in the streets of Mexico. After an accident, which left me  in great deal of pain all my life, I turned my attention  away from the study of medicine to begin a full-time painting  career. I was frequently included  the symbolic monkey  in my works, which is a symbol of lust. In 1939 I went to Paris where I participated in exhibitions. The Louvre bought one of my paintings, ‘The Frame’. As you know, the love of my life was Diego Rivera, whom I married twice but not always happily. All my life was full of pain. I hope the exit is joyful and never return back.  (by Marilena from Greece)

My name is Frida Kahlo. I was born on July 6, 1907 in Mexico City. I’m a Mexican painter. I’ve got two older sisters, Matilda and Adriana. I’m famous with my self-portraits. My mother is Matilde Calderon y Gonzales and my father is Guillermo Kahlo. But my father’s real name was Carl Wilhelm Kahlo and he was born in Pforzheim, Germany. I was married with the famous Mexican artist Diego Rivera. We got married in 1929. Our marriage was often troubled. We got divorced in November 1939 and remarried in 1940. Bad times. My life is so difficult. But I always tried to be strong. I’ve had a bad bus accident on September 17, 1925. There were eleven fractures in my right leg.The accident left me in a great deal of pain and I spent three months recovering in a full body cast. So it was the worst  time of my life. Anyway life is going on and we have to move on.I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best.


(by Margarita from Turkey)

6. Coco Chanel

Hi everyone! I’m Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel and I born into poverty in Samur, France, on August 20, 1883. When I was six years old, my mother died, and my father left me in a convent orphanage. At the age of eighteen, I worked as a seamstress and cabaret singer, and I adopted the nickname “Coco.” I opened a millinery shop in Paris in 1910, followed by boutiques in the fashionable seaside resorts at Deauville (1913) and Biarritz (1915). One of my earliest successes was a jersey dress; I always claimed that I made the first version by cutting down the front of one of my lover’s sweaters and adding a collar and bow. Jersey remained one of my signature fabrics to the end of my life. I was perhaps the most influential fashion designer of the 20th century, despite no formal training in fashion or design. I introduced menswear-inspired fashions for women, comfortable skirt suits, the “little black dress,” and women’s’ trousers, and I made fashionable suntanned skin, costume jewelry, red lipstick, short hair, and my timeless perfume, Chanel No. 5. My influence stemmed from my sensitivity to the changing role of women in society, and my genius in finding inspiration from many sources.  (By Joanna Soczek from Poland)

I was born in Sammur,France on August 19,1883.My early years were anything but glamorous. After my mother's death, I was put in an orphanage by my father who worked as a peddler. Around the age of 20, I became involved with Balsan who offered to help me start a millinery business in Paris. But I soon left him for Arthur ''Boy'' Capel. Both men were instrumental in my first fashion venture. I started out selling hats and later began making clothes. At my start, I knew that clothes can't be glamorous if they aren't comfortable. In the 1920s, I took my thriving business to new heights. One of the most important part of my life was my first perfume,Chanel NO.5. Perfume is the unseen,unforgettable,ultimate accessory of fashion that herals my arrival and prolongs my departure. With the idea that women want to feel confidence with their body I introduced the suit with collarless jacket and well-fitted skirt.I'm sure that many of you wondring if I ever had a lovelife.So yes,I met the wealthy duke of Westminster and we started a long relationship. In response to his marriage proposal, I say that there have been several Duchesses of Westminster but there is only one Chanel. My goals were to create a legend around my name and to success at fashion industry. I did and this is make me a really happy woman! ( By Nancy from Greece)


I was born on August 20, 1883. in the workhouse in the Loire Valley where my unmarried mother worked, although I asserted that I was born in Auvergne. When I was six years old, my mother died and I was sent to the orphanage of the Catholic monastery of Aubazine where I learned the trade of a seamstress. When I turned 18, I left the orphanage, and took up work for a local tailor. It was during a brief stint as a singer in cafés and concert halls that Gabrielle adopted my name Coco, a nickname given to me by local soldiers who went to watch me. I had a brief career as a singer before opening my first clothes shop in 1910. In the 1920s, I launched my first perfume and introduced the Chanel suit and the little black dress. I'm a popular figure in the Paris literary and artistic worlds. One of the most important part of my life was my first perfume, Chanel NO.5. (By Sarkis, Turkey)

7. Alfred Hitchcock

My name is Alfred Hitchcock. I was born in London, UK on August 13, 1889. I was a director, a producer, a television personality, a screenwriter and a filmmaker nicknamed the "Master of Suspense" for employing a kind of psychological suspense in my films, producing a distinct viewer experience.

I consider my childhood lonely period. In 1925, I directed my first film and began making the "thrillers" for which I became known the world over. My recurring themes are fear, guilt and loss of identity. A theme that is also common in my works, with some variations, is that of the persecuted innocent. My childhood made me hate police after asking them to imprison me for bad behavior at the age of 5. Hence the fact that I denounce the inability of any form of authority. I was also disgusted by priests because they were violent in my Catholic school.

(by Hugues and Mathieu from France)


My name is Alfred Hitchcock. I was born in London, UK on August 13, 1889. Before entering the film industry and become a director I worked for a short time in engineering. In 1939, I left for Hollywood where my first film called "Rebecca", won an Academy Award for best picture. When I was a child I was totally lonely and sheltered. I remember, one time, I was sent by my father to a local police station with a note in my hands asking the officer to lock me away for 10 minutes as a punishment for behaving badly. I attended the Jesuit school St.Ignatius College before going on to attend the University of London. In 1920, I entered the film industry with a full-time position at the Famous-Players Lasky company designing title cards for silent films. Some of my famous films are Psycho (1960), The Birds (1963), Marnie (1964) and much more. I have directed more than 50 films in a career of six decades. I have also received the American film Institutes Life Achievement Award in 1979. (by Dimitris T. from Greece)

Hello everybody! My name is Alfred Joseph Hitchcock and I am a movie director, screenwriter and producer. I was born in London, England, on August 13, 1899. My childhood can be described as lonely and sheltered, mostly because of my obesity and my parents’ strict behavior towards me. Around 1920, I became a part of the film industry when I found a full-time job at the the Famous Players-Lasky company designing title cards for silent films. A few years later, I started making my own films. In 1929, I directed “Blackmail” and it became the first film with sound in England. After that, I directed films that became successful all over the world. Two of them are: “The Man Who Knew Too Much” (1934) and “The 39 Steps” (1935). After moving to Los Angeles with my wife and close assistant Alma Reville, I directed “Notorious” (1946), “Vertigo” (1958), the commercial success “Psycho” (1960) and many others. Ever since I was little, I had all kinds of fears and I believe that the only to get rid of them is to make films about them. Some people might think that my miserable childhood and inner fears are reflected in my films and I personally think it is the truth.
(By Nick Poulos from Greece)

You all know me but you may not know that I  was nicknamed "The Master of Suspense".I pioneered many techniques in the suspense and psychologial thriller genres. I moved to Hollywood in 1939.  After a successful career in British cinema in both silent films and early talkies, I was renowned as England's best director. I  moved to Hollywood in 1939 and became a US citizen in 1955.I framed shots to maximise anxiety, fear, or empathy, and used innovative film editing. My stories often feature fugitives on the run from the law alongside "icy blonde" female characters. Many of my films have twist endings and thrilling plots featuring depictions of violence, murder, and crime. Many of the mysteries, however, are used as decoys or "MacGunffins" that serve the film's themes and the psychological examinations of the characters.
(By Natali Sariaslan, Turkey)

8. J.K. Rowling

I was born on 31 July 1965 in Yate, England. I have always wanted to be a writer. My beginning was hard, though. I remember my first book. It was about a rabbit which was ill. I was six years old then. One of the most important people in my life then was Sean. It was him who convinced me to continue writing. He believed in my future success. I wasn’t very self-confident at the time. It never ever came to my mind that I could publish any of my stories. I would burst into laughter if someone told me I would become famous and rich. After graduating from university I did different jobs. In the evenings I wrote various stories. Harry Potter was born in my mind when I was travelling by train. It was in 1990. I liked the name Potter from an early age so I decided to give it to my main character. I wanted to publish my book but none of the publishing houses were interested in it. Finally, I managed to publish ‘Harry Potter’. Unexpectedly it became a great success. Have I changed since then? Well, I think I’m still the same modest person. (by Anna from Poland)


   I was born 50 years ago in Chipping Sodbury, a town in England. I don't remember having many friends as most of the children back in school were laughing at me because of my name. However I do remember my dearest friend Sean because he was the one who encouraged me to continue fighting to make my child-dream come true and be a writer. After making some efforts to publish my first books and having the experience of many different jobs and personal situations I started forming Harry Potter in my mind. My mother's death was the reason why he lost his parents at a very young age. I was really surprised when the story of Harry Potter became famous and succesfull so fast. I was able then to raise my children propertly. Nevertheless there were still problems such as the violation of my personal life by journalists. Their behavior caused many issues to my family. My books were always a way out from daily routine. Harry Potter was not only a science fiction and adventure book, but was also a way to express ideas. “Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it'', Dumbledor said once and I totally agree.  (by Antonia from Greece)

I was born in Yate, England on July 31, 1965. I had a happy childhood and as a child I often wrote fantasy stories which I often read to my sister. We lived in a small village in Gloucestershire where I attended secondary school. My teenage years were pretty unhappy because of my mother's illness and my parents' strained relatonship. After I graduated from the Exeter University, I moved to Portugal to teach English. There, I met and married the Portuguese journalist Jorge Arantes. My daughter, Jessica, was born in 1993. After my marriage ended in divorce, I moved to Endinburgh with my daughter to live near my younger sister. I was broke and so depressed before starting writing my first Harry Potter book. By now, I have written the sequel books of Harry Potter and other 6 books also, my fortune is estimated $56million. On December 26, 2001, I married the anesthetist Neil Murray at our home in Scotland. We have two children together David (2003) and Mackenzie (2005). I also have one child, Jessica (1993) from my previous marriage. I've always believed that "Anything's possible if you 've got enough nerve", that's why I struggled so hard in my life. Some people say that my books have become the best-selling best series in history. I have led both an awfully miserable life and a happy life but "Whenever I was if I had a book with me I had a place I could go and be happy". (by Dimitris P. from Greece) 

I am Joanna Rowlling, a British woman born on the 31 of July  in 1965 and specifically in Yate. I do not actually have a middle name but I borrowed  my grandmother's name Kathleen.As a kid , I used to write fantasy stories and I read most of them to my sister. I remember the day that my aunt gave me Jessica Mitford's autobiography and since then I got stuck to her and I've read all of her books.My teenage years were unhappy as my home life was too complicated due to my mother's illness and a problematic relationship  with my father to whom I do not actually speak.My professors considered me as a quiet competent student, with a denim  jacket and dark hair. When I graduated University I moved to Portugal as an English yeacher. There I met my first husband and we got married  and our daughter Jessica was born. Unfortunately, very soon we got divorced.When I moved back to England I felt a complete failure and I was diagnosed with depression. And then a great inspiration changed all my life.Harry Potter children's book series became best-seller not only in my country  but also worldwide.The following Harry potter's books were a success for me that I didn't expect.Besides the Harry Potter's books, I have written books for adults, as well.(by Joanna from Greece)

I was born 31 July 1965 in Yate as Joanne Rowling. My adventure with writing started when I was 6 years old – I wrote my first story of the rabbit, called Rabbit. I was very proud of myself and I dreamt about being well known writer. Exploring the world of words was very exciting for a child, who I was. As a young girl I moved with my family a few times: first to Winterbourne, then Tutshill. It was quite shocking but I am a flexible person. After studying at the University of Exeter I took a job as a secretary in London. In 1992 I went to Portugal where I was teaching English. I met a handsome and charming Portuguese - Jorge Arantesa. I quickly fell in love. I didn’t see his flaws: his drunkenness, betrayal and aggression... We got married and soon came to the world my little girl – Jessica. It was a life of agony. Fortunately, our relationship ended up with a divorce. I felt relievedbecause I ran away from tyrant but also I had severe depression. I hadn't any means of livelihood, no one to help me. I moved to my sister to Edinburgh so the greatest work of my life was created in homeland. It was the hardest time. I didn’ have job and I had to raise my child alone. But my hope and strenght was Jess. For her I took a nickname (J.K. Rowling) and I published first book of Harry Potter series.It was also associated with the enormity of stress. Publisher constantly made me a lot of problems. A few years later I met Neil Murray. He is my husband since 2001 and father of our two children: David and Mackenzie. Now I can peacefully create new stories and when I have a bad day my children and Neil make me happy every time.  by  Klaudia Zięba from Poland