We Are the Youth is a photographic journalism project chronicling the individual stories of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth in the United States. Through photographic portraits and “as told to” interviews in the participants’ own voices, We Are the Youth captures the incredible diversity and uniqueness among the LGBT youth population. We Are the Youth addresses the lack of visibility of LGBT young people by providing a space to share stories in an honest and respectful way. As We Are the Youth expands, we aim to be even more geographically diverse.
Since June 2010, We Are the Youth has profiled more than 75 young people across the United States. We Are the Youth profiles have been displayed at the Brooklyn Museum, the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, the Fresh Fruit Festival and the GenderReel Festival, and have been featured in media including The British Journal of Photography, Change.org, and The Huffington Post. We Are the Youth is an endorsing organization of the Make it Better Project and a member of the Coalition for Queer Youth.
We Are the Youth is made possible through donated time and the contributions of generous supporters. Contribute to We Are the Youth by making a tax-deductible donation through our fiscal sponsor Brooklyn Arts Council.
WHO WE ARE:
We Are the Youth was created by Laurel Golio and Diana Scholl, childhood friends and Brooklyn-based artists. Diana and Laurel were named to the Daily Dot’s list of Top 10 Online LGBT Activists in 2012.
Laurel’s work revolves around the examination of community and its various subcultures. She is especially interested in using portraiture to investigate issues of self-presentation and identity. Laurel graduated from Smith College with a degree in Visual Anthropology. laurelgolio.com
We’ve thought about the issue of language A LOT, vacillating between “queer,” “LGBT,” and other acronyms. While the term “LGBT” isn’t as inclusive as we would like, we try to use language that is accessible and understandable to people everywhere. However, we use LGBT as an umbrella term. Anyone who doesn’t identify as 100% straight or cisgendered, is welcome to be profiled by We Are the Youth.
Absolutely! While We Are the Youth only profiles LGBT youth who are 21 years and under, we welcome blog posts by allies of all ages and identities. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
If you’re over 21 and want to get involved, you’re a straight ally, or you just feel more comfortable contributing in another way, there are many ways you can participate. We’re always looking for youth write-ups of LGBT events (here’s an example), guest bloggers, additions to our resource page, the list goes on and on. Send us an email, we’d be happy to hear your ideas!
That’s a personal decision. Keep in mind that these photos will be publicly displayed, so that’s something to carefully consider before participating. If you want to participate but are a bit unsure about coming out to the world, we can keep your story anonymous (by not giving your name or location) and take your portrait without giving away your identity.
Diana Scholl retains copyright to all text and interviews; Laurel Golio retains copyright to all photographs. This means that you cannot sell your portrait or interview to another party, or let someone use it for their own purposes without our permission.
The caption of the profiles posted on our blog as well as on the profile page indicate the participant’s name, age, and the location where they were living at the time we profiled them. The footer at the end of each profile indicates the year and location that the photograph was taken.