A national portrait + video collection dedicated to the Queer Asian American Women & Trans* community. The Visibility Project breaks barriers through powerful imagery and storytelling.

The Visibility Project is a national community powered media arts project. We document stories and use photography to create impact and make the Queer AAPI Women and Trans* community visible.
VisibilityProject_Columbus5

Thanks so much for your interest in the Visibility Project. Stoked to work, engage, and build community. The VP will be in Columbus at Ohio State University’s Multicultural Center on October 19th!! Below are some FAQs about participating. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions.

Click to register and share your story.

 

ELIGIBILITY  This project is open to Queer Asian American Women, Gender non-conforming, and Trans people, and the definitions of this are broad: mixed-race asian, asian born/living in the US, south asian, southeast asian, pacific islanders, etc. If you are a gay/bi asian american cis male, or queer person of non Asian/Asian American descent, support by allyship, giving shout outs on social media, or whatever ways you’re excited about support.

 

WHAT TO EXPECT

The shoots take 1 hour and are a combination of photography and video. We’ll do the video first and I’ll leave time at the beginning to answer any questions. You’ll fill out a survey + model release prior to starting.

 

WHAT TO WEAR

Wear colors and no logos, unless you really wanna rep that logo. A lot of folks have historically worn black, white, or grey, I’m trying to spice up the colors. BUT! If black/white/grey is what floats your boat, go for it.

 

HOW WILL THE PHOTOS & VIDEOS BE USED

All content will be posted on the Visibility Project website, the VP social media outlets (twitter, tumblr, facebook, etc) and open to publication in a soon to be published photo-book. The Videos will ultimately be transcribed into english, so text is searchable online, and translated into an Asian language from participant backgrounds. Basically this means that these stories will have an international reach! The Videos will also be “locked down” so that no website outside of the VP or Hyphen magazine can embed or download them. We cannot guarantee the unlicensed distribution of the photos, just because the internets is hard to control.

 

HYPHEN MAGAZINE

The midwest & southern tours are a collaboration between the VP and Hyphen magazine. Nakano is a founder of Hyphen and the creator of Hyphen’s LGBTQ section. Your story may be shared on Hyphen’s website and social media, which has a huge national reach in the mainstream AAPI community.

 

DO I GET THE PHOTOS & VIDEOS

You will get low resolution images of 3 images from the shoot. You’ll receive the images in 6-8 weeks. You are free to use them for facebook + social media + bio pics + etc, credit must be given to Mia Nakano Photography & The Visibility Project.

The videos are very backlogged, by a three years. Just to be real about that. When they are finished, you’ll have 1 week to review the final video and request edits/content removal. They will be uploaded to a password protected space during that review time. You may also choose to not have your video published, and instead have your story shared anonymously through a full or partial written transcription.  

MODEL RELEASE

All participants must sign a “catch all” model release. However if you ever want to be removed from the project website, we are happy to accommodate that. Printed materials or final video productions already in distribution cannot be retracted.

 

CONFIRMATIONS & CANCELLATIONS

We work with registered participants on a first come first serve basis, if you find you can’t make your session let us know asap so other folks may participate!  Also register with an email address you check frequently, because more information will be sent to confirmed participants.

 

The Visibility Project is fiscally sponsored by Asian Americans for Civil Rights and Equality (AACRE)Funded by the Creative Work FundRed Envelope Giving Circle, generous individual donors, and community supporters!

The Visibility Project is a national community powered media arts project. 
We document stories and use photography to create impact and 
make the Queer AAPI Women and Trans* community visible.

Thanks so much for your interest in the Visibility Project. Stoked to work, engage, and build community. We are hosting two days of story gathering in Chicago! Saturday will be hosted at the Uptown offices of Asian Americans Advancing Justice Chicago and Sunday will be hosted at the Lakeview home of an allied community member. Both are close to public transportation, have some street parking, and are wheelchair accessible. Below are some FAQs about participating. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions. 

Click to register and share your story.

Mia Nakano 
Director, Visibility Project 
mia@visibilityproject.org 

ELIGIBILITY 
This project is open to Queer Asian American Women, Gender non-conforming, and Trans people, and the definitions of this are broad: mixed-race asian, asian born/living in the US, south asian, southeast asian, pacific islanders, etc. If you are a gay/bi asian american cis male, or queer person of non Asian/Asian American descent, support by allyship, giving shout outs on social media, or whatever ways you’re excited about support. 

WHAT TO EXPECT

The shoots take 1 hour and are a combination of photography and video. We’ll do the video first and I’ll leave time at the beginning to answer any questions. You’ll fill out a survey + model release prior to starting.

WHAT TO WEAR

Wear colors and no logos, unless you really wanna rep that logo. A lot of folks have historically worn black, white, or grey, I’m trying to spice up the colors. BUT! If black/white/grey is what floats your boat, go for it.

HOW WILL THE PHOTOS & VIDEOS BE USED

All content will be posted on the Visibility Project website, the VP social media outlets (twitter, tumblr, facebook, etc) and open to publication in a soon to be published photo-book. The Videos will ultimately be transcribed into english, so text is searchable online, and translated into an Asian language from participant backgrounds. Basically this means that these stories will have an international reach! The Videos will also be “locked down” so that no website outside of the VP or Hyphen magazine can embed or download them. We cannot guarantee the unlicensed distribution of the photos, just because the internets is hard to control.

HYPHEN MAGAZINE

The midwest & southern tours are a collaboration between the VP and Hyphen magazine. Nakano is a founder of Hyphen and the creator of Hyphen’s LGBTQ section. Your story may be shared on Hyphen’s website and social media, which has a huge national reach in the mainstream AAPI community. 

DO I GET THE PHOTOS & VIDEOS

You will get low resolution images of 3 images from the shoot. You’ll receive the images in 6-8 weeks. You are free to use them for facebook + social media + bio pics + etc, credit must be given to Mia Nakano Photography & The Visibility Project. 

The videos are very backlogged, by a three years. Just to be real about that. When they are finished, you’ll have 1 week to review the final video and request edits/content removal. They will be uploaded to a password protected space during that review time. You may also choose to not have your video published, and instead have your story shared anonymously through a full or partial written transcription. 

MODEL RELEASE

All participants must sign a “catch all” model release. However if you ever want to be removed from the project website, we are happy to accommodate that. Printed materials or final video productions already in distribution cannot be retracted.

CONFIRMATIONS & CANCELLATIONS

We work with registered participants on a first come first serve basis, if you find you can’t make your session let us know asap so other folks may participate!  Also register with an email address you check frequently, because more information will be sent to confirmed participants.

The Visibility Project is fiscally sponsored by Asian Americans for Civil Rights and Equality (AACRE). Funded by the Creative Work Fund, Red Envelope Giving Circle, generous individual donors, and community supporters!

I’m very excited to (belatedly) announce that the Visibility Project in collaboration with Hyphen magazine, is a grantee of the Creative Work Fund. For the next 18-months we’ll be embarking on a multi-phase collaboration which includes a tour of the South and Midwest, publishing a book, and probably the most exciting part is that I’ll be creating, curating, and editing a new LGBTQ section of the Hyphen website. Please sign up for the newsletter and like us on facebook to keep in touch with everything that’s going to be happening.

TRANSLATORS + PROOFREADERS

Seeking translators and proofreaders for a number of Asian languages and Spanish. Translators must write fluently, have an excellent understanding of the LGBTQ community and the changing vocabulary of our self-definitions. You will translate oral stories that have been transcribed to a word document. Proofreaders will correct for proper grammer and punctuation.

Translators: two week turnaround
Proofreaders: one week turnaround 

LANGUAGE BARRIERS + GLOSSARY DEVELOPMENT

We know some languages only have derogatory words for Lesbian or Gay. And some may not have any words for Trans, Queer, Bi, Gender non-conforming, etc. A part of this translation phase is developing a multi-lingual glossary. Definitions will be accessible in the interview and on a larger glossary page

Translator: $10 per page
Proofreader: $5 per page

Languages needed: Vietnamese, Japanese, Tagalog, Chinese, Hindi, Thai, Indonesian, Khmer/Cambodian, Korean, Sinhala, Nepali and Spanish.

Click here to apply. Super easy.

API EQUALITY – NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
My good friend Monna Wong was recently appointed to be Executive Director of API Equality – Northern California, an org that works with the LGBT Asian Pacific Islander community to combat homophobia and transphobia in the API community while uplifting the voices and experiences of API folks within the LGBT community.

They must raise $7000 to support their summer internship program, which is so important to the longevity of the Queer API movement.

If you donate $120 in the name of the Visibility Project, (representing one dollar for the Queer API folks + Allies they’ve trained all year), you will get a free tintype of a digital image you send delivered to your door! Tintypes will be printed in early July.

A tintype is an image printed on a metal plate and a historical photographic process from the 1800s. Here’s a little history, information, and some more sample images

[portfolio slideshow]

THANK YOU FOR YOUR DONATIONS!

Wanted to send a huge shout out to all the folks who donated and people who lent their support by fundraising, sharing our page, and spreading the word about this work. Here’s a little snippet of whats in store for the future.

Next month the “SEX” issue of Hyphen magazine is being released with a featurette article about the Visibility Project. I’ve also been hard at work entering in a lot of glamorous data that fabulous intern Meg H. has entered in to a fascinating google document. It’s actually really cool. Between the two of us, we’re trying to launch a comprehensive resource guide with lots of cool orgs, websites, and factoidy information. It’s basically a data dump of all the internet wandering Mia has done over the years, combined with participant suggestions, and aggregating other resource lists.

Please contact mia (at) visibilityproject (dot) org if you have any suggestions!