By Melissa Collins
Looking at her you’d never know where her true passion lies. Her tall, slender frame, glides down the hall like a beautiful, gentle spirit, or a guardian angel gently watching over small children. Yet her true passion lies within the borders of war. The bounds of blood, guts, gore, and remnants of hell. The horrors of nightmares, which only a few ever dare to dream of.
Elisa Marques, a senior at Missouri Valley, has a new found passion in her quest to becoming a journalism photographer. It all began many years ago in her native country, Goiania, Brazil, when Elisa found a page on Facebook that recruited volleyball players. In order to get a college scholarship to the United States, she applied, got her visa, and came to the states in August of 2012.She started college at a junior college in Kansas, with an interest in psychology. But when she transferred to Missouri Valley, she fell in love with Mass Communication. Elisa soon became a Mass Communication major, however her true love, her true passion, would not be found on a piece of paper, but rather found in the viewfinder of a camera.
“I think that photography is a beautiful type of art, and something that I have always admired, but I never thought I could actually be the person behind the camera ‘creating’ that art,” Elisa said.
The photography of Robert Capa and Margaret Bourke White, while in war zones, caught her eye. And Elisa discovered a deep love within her, for a kind of photography that would send her on a whole new path in life.
In the summer of 2015, Elisa returned to Brazil, to photograph the protests that were going on. During this trip, she decided her path in life would definitely be war photography.
“I NEED to feel that excitement and danger in a bigger scale,” Elisa said. “Today, I have many goals and desires in life, but what I really want to focus my energy and excitement on war photography. A lot of people already asked me if I’m afraid to die. But what is death? You don’t know, I don’t know, no one knows. You only know what death is, after you die. How can I fear something that I don’t even know what it is? Maybe death is something so beautiful, so comforting that we are all fools for running away from it. I believe that there are certain people who were born to do certain things, and it doesn’t matter how hard you try to take it out of your heart, it will always be there. It’s difficult for me to explain this desperate need that I have, but inside my heart there is so much disappointment toward the human race. My chest is full of anger against a world that hurts so many people; against people that hurt other people. I’m tired of seeing innocent human beings all around the world, dying without someone giving them a shoulder to lean on, without someone making them feel they are important, without someone giving them a voice to the rest of the world. I think that through war photography I can bring awareness to the many issues that are going on around the world, give hope to those who are hurting and don’t know how long they can endure, and in the worst situations, I can make sure that those who no longer have time on earth, go in peace with themselves, knowing that death is nothing at all.”
Elisa Marques, definitely such a lady that will put a new spin on war photography. Because of her love for what she does, she will be a huge asset to the industry. And an even bigger blessing to society. We should all be thankful that such a wonderful person, such an amazing lady, walks among us.