The Normality Project
In the spring of 2016, two friends set out to start a simple photography project to present at an art show. At that time, it was in their hearts to take portraits of transgender individuals in the local area. That summer they displayed portraits of five different trans individuals: four trans men and one non-binary individual.
After that art show, the decision was made to continue the project. It was clear our work wasn't done yet.
There was a lot of talk in the news about bathrooms, popular celebrities who identified as trans, and the "military trans ban." However, there was not much about the "average" people who identified as transgender. We often heard of transgender individuals talked about in a negative way and their stories were often portrayed with click-bait titles. Additionally, we started to notice that the stories that were shared were not very diverse. Very often the voices of the community were very heteronormative, white passing, fit individuals. It became very hard for people that didn't identify like these individuals to find representation in the community. Now, by no means do we think that these stories are unimportant. We just noticed a huge gap in accurate representation of the transgender community as a whole.
Our mission quickly grew to create a magazine that was accompanied with digital media to help aide us in our goal to help everyone in the transgender community share their story. We wanted to give the younger generation in the community some positive people to look up to that actually looked like them. Additionally, we wanted to create a space where people outside of the transgender community could come and hear the stories and hopefully change and improve their understanding of transgender individuals.
This is not fake news.
These are real stories about real human beings who are trying to find their place in this world just like you and me. This project is an attempt to bring awareness and normalize the stigma of identifying as trans.
This is the Normality Project.
Currently, Normality is made of a very small team of three passionate individuals: Aiden (a male identified individual who was assigned female at birth), Learda (cisgendered woman), and Kaitlin (cisgendered woman). Aiden has worked various jobs in the media field for 12 years, primarily as a visual storyteller. Learda currently works in the film industry, previously working on The Son, The Long Road Home and Alita. Kaitlin currently works in the design department for a newspaper in the state of Texas and has spent 10 years as a journalist at other publications.
Normality is currently a volunteer based organization & has volunteers across the U.S. A full list of volunteers is coming soon.
Photo taken by Ricky Molnar.