(Guest post by photographer Richard Mann)
Hello, members or visitors to the SJ TDoV event:
For the past couple of years, I have been embarking on a labor-of-love project of photographing portraits of transgender people on an old-school 4×5 large-format film camera. In 2017, 10 of my large prints were exhibited at the SJ Billy DeFrank Center on the outside wall as part of the TDoV event. This year we plan to display a similar setup.
I need your help: most importantly, I need people willing to spend 15 mins in front of the camera. The process takes a bit longer than just “point and shoot”, but the results are very satisfying. To protect your privacy, I will not use anyone’s real name unless they give me such permission. I understand that I am asking you to take certain risks by participating in the project (namely, visibility), but I hope that you will take this step.
You can view the project on my website http://richardmanphoto.com, and you can also see my work on Instagram or Facebook, under the name “richardmanphoto”.
Second, I am hoping to send prints out to different PRIDE festivals in the country to promote the project. So, if you have any contact info, from San Jose and/or San Francisco to PRIDE organizations in other places, please let me know.
Lastly, if you would like to contribute to my purchases of film and other costs associated with this project, you can always paypal money to (and you can email me at) firstname.lastname@example.org, ANY amount is appreciated, even $1 helps.
Want to help put this fabulous event together and make it run smoothhly? Volunteer, We need you! See https://www.volunteersignup.org/P4XWY .
ally like to hear from you
about your experiences at the 2017 South Bay Trans Day of Visibility. Emails and comments are welcome, but, yes, we’ve taken the useful and popular route of creating a survey. It should only take a few minutes (fewer than a dozen questions!) to answer.
Please go to the survey, and give us your feedback! There’s even a space to provide your email address if you want to give a talk, moderate a discussion, perform in the show, or help us move tables and chairs.
Help us make next year even better!
Thanks again for being there.
Thank you to everyone who volunteered and who came to the seventh annual South Bay Trans Day of Visibility!
We had a wonderful turn out during the day, with plenty of people there to learn as well as share information. The community resources tables were full, and a number of HIV tests were taken. We received recognition from local mayors and city council people.
The evening show was great fun! We had some very different acts this year, goth and country, burlesque and serious, humorous and tender. And then there was the sideshow. If you weren’t there… you missed an experience! We also heard an amazing BAYMEC speaker, and saw photos.
Speaking of, one of the highlights of the day was Richard Man‘s wall of art portrait photography, making us visible from the street! People read, talked, admired, and Richard got a few more subjects as well! We hope to hang those works again in the future.
There are photos around – feel free to ad yours here! (with the consent of any identifiable peeps!).
Today March 31 is the International Transgender Day of Visibility. Here are a few great links to read and see more:
Tomorrow, those of us in the South Bay, Santa Clara to Santa Cruz to Palo Alto will gather at the Billy DeFrank LGBTQ Center in San Jose. We’re going to talk about our experiences, teach each other, hear from a few political types, play games and chat with a snack, see great art, laugh and cry at a show. In it all is love, of who we are, of who we will be, of what we are creating together.
See you there.
This morning, I proudly accepted the International Transgender Day of Visibility proclamation awarded by the Santa Clara Board of Supervisors on behalf of the South Bay TDOV team.
Beforehand, we had – remarkably, for the second time – raised the transgender pride flag outside of the county building. The small ceremony that featured several local speakers, including a representative from the recent LGBTQ health assessment as well as Supervisor Ken Yeager, Director of the Office of LGBTQ Affairs Maribel Martinez, and myself.
Expect to see more links and photos as they come in! I was interviewed by the local news, so maybe we’ll get a link to that too.
There are many people locally who are involved in transgender issues, lawyers and doctors, politicians and lifestyle coaches. Thank you all for showing Trans Pride.
These are scary, unstable times. We all know it. A lot of us are reconsidering what’s smart and what’s safe. An out event like the South Bay Trans Day of Visibility… it’s pretty reasonable to wonder if we’ve taken any steps for security.
I hate to think like that, and yet…
We have. The Santa Clara County Leather Association has proudly and generously stepped up to work as security at TDOV. The club has provided this service many times in the past, to organizations such as the Imperial Royal Lion Monarchy. I’m a member of the leather community, and I’m very glad to have my friends joining us. So look for those tell tale signs such as leather vests (they’ve been at TDOV all along!). Say hi. These good folks are keeping an eye on the door for us, ready to call for help in the unlikely event we need it.
Say thanks if you get a chance.
To help you identify Security and general staff, we’ll be wearing slightly obnoxious, easy to spot ribbons. If you have a question or need assistance, please speak to one of us.
This year I’m very excited to have my friend, high tech guy and photographer Richard Man, displaying his work. Known for an interest in transformation, Richard has been working on a project portraying contemporary transgender people; check it out at http://richardmanphoto.com/PICS/HeartsOnOurSleeves-Portfolio/.
The South Bay Trans Day of Visibility is very lucky: Richard is printing out a number of pieces in this project on grand size, and hanging them on the Billy DeFrank LGBTQ Community Center! People approaching the Center, by foot or by auto, will be welcomed with this artistic display! Richard is also interested in adding more photos to his project—look for his photo setup outdoors (weather willing) if you’re interested in participating (or perhaps in purchasing a print!).
Here is his artist’s statement:
“We’d like to think that in 2017 we have made great strides in equality and human rights. Unfortunately, transgender people are still being ostracized in society and even used by politicians to advance divisive agendas. The homicide rates for transgender people keeps reaching new highs, with 27 victims in 2016 and already 7 by the end of February 2017. Suicide rates, especially among transgender youth, are also quite high, with a study showing that 30 percent of transgender youth have attempted suicide at least once.
In the end, transgender people are simply people. People born in bodies that don’t match their brain’s gender, people who do not adhere to gender binary archetypes, and sometimes even people who are born intersex. There is no “transgender agenda”. Transgender people come from all walks of life, and just want to grow up and live a good life like everyone else. Some recently transitioned, some transitioned a long time ago, and some are just most comfortable being in expressing a non-binary gender .
The goal of this portrait project is to photograph transgender people and tell their stories. I have opted to use a large format film camera for this project, partly for the photographic results, but also because by using an older process that takes time, I can make connections with the people being photographed, and hopefully demonstrate my sincerity. I believe the stories of marginalized people need to be told, and be told in a respectful manner.”
Last week the South Bay TDOV team learned that Santa Clara County is once again recognizing/declaring March 31 as the International Transgender Day of Visibility! (As an aside, in recent years, South Bay TDOV has received a commendation for our local event.) Last year, the transgender pride flag was raised over a county building — the very first time this happened in the US! In the late breaking news department, I’ve just learned it’s happening again this year!
Join us in raising the flag!
I invite all local trans folk (who can get the morning off!), and the greater community, to attend this year’s flag raising. It will happen on Tuesday 3/28 at 9 am, directly before the Board of Supervisor’s meeting. Meet up outside the County building with all of the flags, on Hedding Street in San Jose. There will be a small ceremony beforehand. I’ll say a few words, as will Maribel Martinez, Director of the County Office of LGBTQ Affairs, among others. With any luck, the rain will clear by then and we’ll get to enjoy the flag in proud in the breeze!
In pride and love,
SB TDOV coordinator
Last Year’s Coverage
Watch! Local news video coverage of the 2016 flag raising: 2016 Flag Raising video
Read! Link to the Bay Area Reporter’s article on the 2016 flag raising: http://ebar.com/news/article.php?sec=news&article=71398
The South Bay Trans Day of Visibility is for all birth gender non-conforming people (how’s that for a confusing in itself; babies likely don’t have a gender concept). The idea is, if you’ve been labeled a particular gender, and don’t feel that label quite fits, TDOV is celebrating you!
How can you tell? Check out the workshops. We have workshop topics of Intersex, Gender Non-Conforming, and Non-binary. Take this opportunity to listen to and talk with people who’ve had experiences like yours. As it happens, we have intersex people on the event committee as well. The show is going to be rich in gender fluid action.
All of us, transsexual, non-binary, and everywhere else, are living rich lives, and have a shared history. It’s a happy thing to see each other. Wear your favorite clothes, share your pronoun, have a snack with new friends. Welcome!
Of course, TDOV also welcomes our friends, lovers, family, and community members who are eager to learn more so they can be great allies.