I’ve been conceptualizing this project for several years, and am excited to see this series coming to life. It is a series of black and white environmental portraits of trans-identified and gender nonconforming humans that celebrate who they are as people. The media and society in general is starting to discuss trans issues more, and there is more awareness, but so often, the focus of discussion is about bodies and what is underneath our clothes, instead of who we are and what we have to offer the world.
This series celebrates our lives. We are doctors, students, parents, bankers, brokers, musicians, photographers, children, and teachers. We are free spirits, creative souls, world travelers, cat rescuers, and performers. We are lovers, fighters, hopers, dreamers, movers, and shakers. These photographs intend to capture us in ways that celebrate who we are.
The intended audience for these photographs is not the transgender community. It is for everyone (including the trans community), but it is especially for those who are unfamiliar with trans issues. Who believe they have never knowingly met a trans person. Who live in areas where ignorance of who we are and what we often face is prevalent. Where there is a huge opportunity for increased understanding.
The transgender community understands what it means to be transgender. These photographs are for us, too, but at the core, this project is about visibility. This project is to give visibility to trans individuals, and gender non-conforming individuals, and to show that world that we, too, exist, and what we have to offer the world transcends the boundaries of gender.
What We Need
There are two very important ways you can support this project: sharing the project with people, especially outside the LGBTQ community, and supporting us financially. Both are essential.
We already have the necessary equipment to photograph this project. We need financial support for travel expenses so Rhys can drive across the country and photograph all you awesome people! We also need a budget for printed materials – for conferences, and for printing photographs for exhibitions.
We want to do something on a really large scale with this. Your ideas are welcome! We are just beginning the project, so ideas for large scale installations are just in their infancy, but we are thinking of some kind of very public, highly visible installations – possibly video projections on large buildings, billboards, or some kind of incredible large-scale project where people can really see and experience these photographs in an awesome way.
Other Ways You Can Help
Spread the word! Seriously! We need you to share this with everyone you can, especially those outside of the LGBTQ community. We would love to have everyone share this with someone they might normally not share this project with. Please share!