While other photographers scrambled to shoot the scenes playing around the Maiden Square in Kiev, Tom Jamieson wandered the occupied zone asking to see what protesters were packing.
“Every single person without fail had a club or a bat or something like that,” says Jamieson. “You couldn’t help but notice the DIY nature of the whole thing, from the barricades themselves to the totally inadequate body armor that people were wearing, and the weapons as well.”
The weapons are shown in the hands of their owners against a black backdrop. Jamieson and his assistant wandered the zone, lugging a black background cloth that they would set up when they found a protester carrying an interesting-looking implement. They shot outside in the square, in occupied buildings, near the protesters’ tents, usually in the early morning or twilight hours to keep lighting consistent.
Some weapons are marked with the names of their home towns or messages for their intended targets — others are decorated with religious symbols. Each is single-minded in its design — clubs and maces for bashing, slingshots and stones for hurling, and forked pikes for ripping the shields out of the hands of police. These personalized tools of revolution were a source of pride among their owners, and the details of each tells its own story.
Despite the horrible situation and necessity of the weapons, it’s rather interesting that the very banal design of these weapons indeed shows how determined the protesters were to damage the government security forces.