Interview Laurel Golio

“A lot of these youth, regardless of what they’ve been through, have a really positive outlook on life and are very proud of who they are.”

Name: Laurel Golio
Hometown: Ossining, New York
Style of photography: Photojournalism/Portrait/Documentary
Type of camera(s): Pentax 6×7 + Canon 5D
Website: www.laurelgolio.com & www.wearetheyouth.org. We Are the Youth is currently fundraising through a Kickstarter campaign to diversify the project and expand its reach to the Midwest.

What gives you inspiration?

In regards to We Are the Youth, I find inspiration in our youth participants. We’ve met some incredible kids who have done some really amazing things, and many of them are under 18 years old! A lot of these youth, regardless of what they’ve been through, have a really positive outlook on life and are very proud of who they are. I find their energy and optimism really inspiring. I also enjoy photographing young people because I’ve found that (generally speaking) they are much less inhibited and posed than adults.

What are your influences?

I’ve been staring at a lot of Rineke Dijkstra’s work lately, I love the way she captures subtle changes in her subjects over time; a lot of Larry Sultan, his work is killer! And, I’ve always loved classic photojournalism, stuff taken for the FSA in the late 30s and early 40s — the images are timeless and always make me really excited to shoot.

Why did you choose these photos?

The photos are part of a project I’ve been working on for the past two and a half years, called We Are the Youth (wearetheyouth.org). We Are the Youth is a photojournalism project that shares the stories of LGBT youth across the United States. I photograph all the youth participants and Diana Scholl (a journalist and childhood friend), interviews them. We then publish an “as told to” account of their story along with their portrait. The project aims to address the lack of visibility of LGBT young people by providing a space to share diverse stories in an honest and respectful way.

What does photography mean to you?

For me, photography means being able to tell a story, to catalog and share an experience, a feeling, some sort of magic that you’ve encountered or created. It’s a chance to capture something, a moment or a subject and attempt to convey and illuminate some sort of honesty surrounding that.

Photos:

Copyright reserved by Laurel Golio