Visible Bodies: Transgender Narratives Retold

San Diego is helping rewrite the way stories about transgender people are told, through an exhibit of more than 30 portraits of people in the local transgender community.



I love leather. I love wearing it, smelling it, touching it, and caring for it. The weight of it, the feeling of every crease, makes it wear more like armor than clothing. Leather separates a person from the rest of society; there’s something unique about a someone in leather.

Bootblacking, the art of caring for other people’s armor, is how I began to realize that there were other people who had the same doubts and questions that I had. Was I doing this whole “being an adult” thing right? Was I butch enough to be a top? Was I open enough to be polyamorous? Was I passing enough to be called whatever gender or non-gender I am? What if I change so much that my friends and family don’t like me anymore?

The leather community is where I found connection to people like me. It’s where I found more people concerned with connection based on personality, energy (for you “woo woo” folks), brains, and integrity rather than the bits and parts that are attached. It’s where I found people who wanted me exactly as I am — a genderqueer butch-fag.

Spike, age 29
Assigned Sex: female
Gender Identity: genderqueer/butch/boy
Pronouns: he/him/his

Tags: Transgender