Author(s): SMITH RACHELLE LEE
Speaking OUT: Queer Youth In Focus is a photographic essay that explores a wide spectrum of experiences told from the perspective of a diverse group of young people, ages 14 to 24, identifying as queer. Portraits are presented without judgment or stereotype by eliminating environmental influence with a stark white backdrop. This backdrop acts as a blank canvas, where each subject's personal thoughts are handwritten onto the final photographic print. Speaking OUT provides rare insight into the passions, joys and sorrows felt by LGBT youth.
"Even when the subjects speak to prejudice or violence, the entirety of the work maintains a celebratory tone, right in line with the It Gets Better campaign and the Free to Be... You and Me movement." --"Publishers Weekly"
Rachelle Lee Smith is an award-winning, nationally and internationally shown and published photographer. Her work in "Speaking OUT" combines her passions for activism and photography to tell the stories of, and provide a rare insight into, the lives of queer youth. She lives in Philadelphia. Candace Gingrich is an LGBT rights activist with the Human Rights Campaign. Her involvement in the movement for queer equality began when her brother, Representative Newt Gingrich, R-Georgia, was elected House speaker. She lives in Hyattsville, Maryland. Graeme Taylor skyrocketed to international attention when he confronted a school board for not defending gay rights in its schools. He became one of the youngest and most widely known openly gay teens in America. He was interviewed on MSNBC's "Jansing & Co." and the "Ellen Degeneres Show" and is now the subject of a short film, "Shrug." He lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan.