Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Re-Cap Of The Butch/Femme Photo Project

I've been thinking about following up all of the awesomeness of the book being out in the world now with a blog post telling the story of how the project came to be but the more I thought about it the more I realized that I've already done all of that writing here on this blog. So, instead, here's a re-cap of all of those posts starting with the "official" announcement on July 19, 2012.

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Butch/Femme Photo Project Announcment, July 19, 2012

Over the course of the last few months I've been reading two books that have made quite the impact on me by teaching me a lot about the history of butches and femmes. The Persistent Desire: A Femme-Butch Reader edited by Joan Nestle and Persistence: All Ways Butch And Femme edited by Ivan E. Coyote and Zena Sharman. Both are anthologies and contain an abundance of incredible writers. I highly recommend getting your hands (and eyes) on these books.
One of the things I've learned from reading these books is that butches and femmes have always been here. We're always going to be here. No matter how much our community fights amongst itself about our presence, we are always going to be here. We are a part of it's history, we are a part of it's present and we are a part of it's future.

There is no one way to be butch or femme. Each one of us is our own unique and individual expression of the identity. Those expressions are what I would like to capture and document for future generations.


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Friday, August 10, 2012 was the day of my very first photo project shoot. 

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August 15, 2012 Update

The Butch/Femme Photo Project has been very well received by the community all over the US and even a few up in Canada! I've received some beautiful and heartbreaking answers to the questions I sent out to all who wish to participate. I am deeply touched by their willingness to share so openly and so freely. Their stories are so important and they should be heard and remembered.

So far I've had two photo shoots with project participants! I have four more scheduled this weekend, too! Meeting participants and photographing them has been incredibly inspiring and motivating. This project includes some pretty incredible and amazing people. I'm really very excited to see how it progresses. I'm considering creating a blog for it but haven't quite decided on that piece just yet. Once I get more images together and edited I hope to figure that out.


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Butch/Femme Photo Project Gets A Facebook Page, September 27, 2012

I just wanted to let everyone know that my Butch/Femme Photo Project now has it's own Facebook page! It's another way for me to get the word out about the project so please check it out, "Like" it and share it far and wide! 
https://www.facebook.com/ButchFemmePhotoProject

I have three photo shoots lined up this weekend for the project so an update to the page will happen soon! Thank you all for participating, supporting and encouraging me to keep going with this project! 


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Butch/Femme Photo Project In It's First Gallery Show! October 30, 2012

I am so happy to announce that the first eleven photographs in the Butch/Femme Photo Project will be featured in TransConnect Resource and Cultural Fair gallery show titled "Femme, Butch, Queer & Trans Intersection" at the Portland Q Center next month! They will be hanging at the Center for the entire month of November and ten of the eleven pieces will be a part of a silent auction to raise funds for the Q Center and the Order of Benevolent Bliss’ working and grants funds!

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Kickstarter For The Butch/Femme Photo Project! January 16, 2013

I've put it together, submitted it for approval with the Kickstarter folks and now it's live! Check it out!


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Getting the buzz going on the fundraising. January 21, 2013

I knew from the start that running a Kickstarter campaign was going to be hard work. Constantly contacting as many people as you possibly can is not as easy as it sounds. There was a time when social networking sites made it easy but now, not so much. Not only do I post the link in a bunch of places daily but I've also begun privately messaging and emailing people who may or may not be seeing my daily posts. This project really is a passion of mine so I really want to do as much as I possibly can to see it through.
Five days into it and I'm mentally exhausted. My brain won't stop trying to figure out something new to try to drum up more backers. It also won't stop worrying about what might happen if it doesn't fund. Where would I go from there? Do I have a plan B? 


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Press for the Kickstarter campaign! February 11, 2013

The Advocate wrote an article about the Butch/Femme Photo Project!
 
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The final hours of the Kickstarter campaign! February 13, 2013

There's only 41 hours to go on the Kickstarter campaign and thanks to a very generous donation of $1,800 within the last hour, it's now past the 60% mark!

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Holy crap, it funded! February 16, 2013

When I awoke yesterday and checked my email on my phone I found that there were a few new backers to the Kickstarter project and that there was still quite a ways to go. I felt sad for a moment but then reminded myself that, hey, it raised over $6,000. That's nothing to sneeze at. Plus, it's gotten a lot of media attention. There's always a plan B and both of those things will help with plan B. Still, I wasn't going to give up on the Kickstarter itself until the clock had ticked down, ending the campaign. It still had 6 hours to go and anything could happen in the span of those hours. (Read more...)

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On Saturday, March 9, 2013 I spent the day driving up to and around Seattle doing photoshoots for the project.

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Planning, planning and travel planning. March 18, 2013

Yesterday, I finally sat down and made my itinerary to travel to the Rockies, the Midwest and the Northern East coast for the project. This morning, I feel a million times lighter. Not that I don't have more planning to do, fundraising as well, but at least this part of it is done. It's been weighing heavily on my mind. I also made plans to travel to Texas and Louisiana. I still need to make plans to travel to North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia, South Carolina, Florida, Southern California, Arizona and New Mexico. (Read more...)

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Working on letting go of the negativity in the comments of the press articles. March 21, 2013

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt
 
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To say making travel plans and coordinating with multiple people is difficult would be quite the understatement. This is something I have learned quite quickly. But, I'm learning how to move through it and solidify plans so I have my first crazy travel adventure lined up. It happens the first week in May and it goes a little something like this: (deep breath) (Read more...)
 
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Trip to Vancouver, BC. April 28, 2013
It was the first time I'd ever used my passport, which was exciting and nerve wracking to me. The border crossing officer asked me what my purpose was for visiting Canada. (Read more...)
 
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Waiting for my first flight for the 13 cities, 22 photo shoots in 9 days tour! Getting through security at the Portland airport was a breeze and everyone is so happy and friendly. That was a nice start to my trip! Plus, it calmed the nerves a bit. Not totally, but a bit. I'm what you might call a nervous traveler. But, by the time I get to the end of the week, I'll be an old pro at this. (Read more...)
 
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Denver was amazing! My first shoot happened at the world famous Red Rocks! It was my first time there and I have to say, it truly was awesome and beautiful. 

Two shoots followed that one, one at a participant's house and the other at a participant's cabin, complete with horses! 

To end my day, I had dinner with friends I haven't seen in 12 years! Thank you for a wonderful day, Denver. 

This morning I'm off to Madison, WI then will be driving to Waukesha and Chicago. Needless to say, I can feel my energy struggling to stay up. I'm hoping to catch a nap on my next two flights. 
 
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This trip has been incredibly awesome. As exhausted as I am, looking through the photos of all of the amazing butches and femmes makes every ounce of that exhaustion worth it. I can't express enough gratitude to those who helped make this happen.
(Read more...)

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The last weekend of my week long travel for the project was spent traveling from New York to New Jersey and up into Massachusetts. On my way to New Jersey I was able to catch a glimpse of NYC and of Lady Liberty, which was pretty awesome, even though very brief. Extra time to "see the sights" was not built in to my itinerary so any glimpse of the sights was bonus for me on this trip. (Read more...)

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Texas June 25, 2013

This weekend I traveled to Texas to photograph participants in Dallas, Plano, Spring, Houston, and Wichita Falls. A couple days before I left for Texas I had two photo shoots on the schedule for the weekend. Shortly after posting my travel plans on the project's Facebook page I scheduled five more, which was incredible. Texas brought it! (Read more...)

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I spent the last week in August in Southern California. I also drove out to Phoenix and Santa Fe. It was a trip filled with not only project shoots but family time and a wee bit of friend time. (Read more...)

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On Sunday, September 22, 2013 I drove up to Olympia, Washington for a few project shoots.

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I spent the first weekend in December 2013 in Florida traveling around a few parts of the state for project shoots. 

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In April of this year I traveled to Boston for a shoot and to New York City a couple of times. On one of my visits to New York City I got to do a project photo shoot on a rooftop in Manhattan. It was amazing and I felt fantastic. (Read about it here...)

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In August of this year I started talking to Blue Skirt Productions about publishing the project as a book and on October 29th, I signed a publishing contract with them! (Read more here...)

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Pre-orders for the book! December 2, 2014

I feel like these past few weeks have been a bit surreal. This book, this project that I've been pouring my heart and soul into over the past couple of years is/has become a reality. (Read more...)

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The book release party happens on December 15, 2014 and bookstores in Portland and Phoenix begin to carry the book! (Read more...


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