Frieke Janssens is a talented photographer and artist based in Brussels, Belgium. She began working with photography at age 15. Frieke got the idea after seeing a YouTube video a two-year old Indonesian smoker who smokes 40 cigarettes a day. The children that took part in the project used chalks and sticks of cheese to mimic cigarettes, also candles and incense created the swirls of smoke. The result, “Smoking Kids,” is a styled view of what children—or almost miniature adults—would look like if they were smoking.

The children, aged four to nine, are shameless posing while enjoying their cigarette or cigarillo. So why kids? By portraying adults as children all the attention went to the smoking. An adult would draw to much attention to the portrayed person. Thus these portraits evoke question such as: is the smoking ban the right way to get rid of an absurd addiction and are smokers treated like little kids who can’t make the difference between good and bad? While Frieke doesn’t give answers, the portraits are strong enough to start your thinking process!

-Frieke Janssens