Hello! If you have reached this page you were given a special Link! So WELCOME! A little about my project, While I myself have always identified as straight, I also never felt I “fit” into the conservative world in which I was raised.
Growing up, swear words, (which included anything other than Shoot), alcohol, smoking, sex, drugs, tattoos, even piercings all equated to sin. However, over all that, I was raised to believe that the worst thing someone could say about me was that I might be a lesbian. As a kid who would rather go catch frogs than wear a dress, or climb a tree over doing my hair so I’d keep it short, I was only allowed to get my ears pierced in order to look more girly so I didn’t look “Butch” or be mistaken as a boy or gay.
Being in the theater throughout school, I was often around gay men and women, and I struggled to reconcile the people I knew from what I had grown up “knowing.” I found them often, warm, supportive and understanding of my hopes and dreams of Broadway than many in the Christian community. In fact, I felt judgment and distaste in what I felt was my calling, including one moment sitting in my bible college’s cafeteria where I was told that becuase I didn’t want to do “Christian” theater that “God would deal with me.”
While many of the LGBTQ men and women I knew were not Christian, for multiple reasons, I have also seen this in the church. I have seen friends that continue to act out their faith while also being true to who they are. I have also seen friends who believe that who they are in and of itself is a sin, and have watched as they struggled with depression and self loathing, trying to reconcile how God made them with what the church around them is telling them about how God made them. My hope with this project is to shed some light on that struggle for those that do not have to go through it.
One thing Jesus did was meet with, sit down with and eat with those that were the outcasts of the time, bringing them INTO his fold proving you can be both a tax collector and follower of Christ. In that way, I also hope to help those who are in the church and feel like you can’t be both Christian and LGBTQ, to realize that in fact, like being a Christian doesn’t keep me from being a Liberal, being a Christian doesn’t stop man from being gay, or vice versa. Additionally for those who are both, that they are not alone, and that they CAN be both. Christ loves them, he MADE them, and that it’s not an either / or type of situation.
I don’t pretend that this will not be a controversial topic, post or exhibit* (because I hope to have a gallery showing for this project once finished as well). While I don’t plan on listing peoples last names or anything, these are images that could cause backlash from those that disagree with the message.
What will you get if you participate? I cannot offer monetary compensation at this time. However, I can offer a print of your favorite shot from our shoot and watermarked images for social media.
At this time, I am looking to possibly done one large group shoot that will then allow for smaller portrait shoots within it, and/or other single shoots for those that can’t make the group shoot. With both I welcome you including spouses, partners, parents, children or fur babies. I want to capture a 3-5 images of who you are in a snapshot, and our loved ones are a big part of that.
* A portion of all proceeds (if any) from this project will go toward a local LGBTQ charity TBA. (I’m still researching the best options)
To participate, please fill out the form so we can create art together!