Words cannot express my excitement about our current fundraiser. It’s a cause that’s near and dear to my heart, so I thought I’d share.
In my previous life I was a high school journalism teacher. I ran the school’s yearbook and newspaper as well as taught an introductory class. Part of my curriculum was teaching photography. I taught angles, rule of thirds, exposure, the works. Every time we started the unit though, I got the same responses. “Miss I don’t want to have pictures of myself!” “Omg I’m so ugly I can’t!” “Why can’t we use filters?” Their fears about their own appearance were absolutely heartbreaking.
But then the cool part happened. Once we got someone behind the camera who knew what they were doing, once they started realizing that imperfections are just different perfections, that no one looks alike and that’s fantastic, you could see self-confidence improve. Kids who had once dreaded being photographed, we’re now playing with different poses just to see how the shadows played on their face. The ones who we’re worried they didn’t have a snapchat filter, realized that their nose didn’t have to have a dog snout on it to be interesting to look at.
So when this fundraiser fell in my lap, I was giddy with excitement. Now, not only could we positively impact self-image through a photo shoot, we could also target those who may need it the most. I will not even begin to explain the trans experience, I’m not trans, and I refuse to speak for others when their own voice is the one that needs to be heard. I do know that photography is powerful and I do know that we have an obligation to help those who feel stuck in their own skin.
All to say, if you haven’t yet. Donate. Here’s how this fundraiser works. We’re selling eggs at $10 each. You can buy one, two, or a dozen. You can provide money at the Sanctuary Center itself, online at our donation page, or by throwing quarters at my face. I truly don’t care how we get it, I just want to make sure we’re successful. With your support, we will gift members of the trans community absolutely free headshots and a photo session with the most amazing photographer, Ash Budney.
What’s in it for you? Well for one, the joy of being an awesome person. Also, we’re going to draw a winning egg on Easter for a beautiful bouquet donated to us by Artistic Florist of Tampa Bay.
Thanks in advance to all of you who are going to make this an empowering and beautiful April for our community.