Blog post written by saffron liberty
Celebrating pride month.
With the arrival of pride month comes an abundance of celebration: corporations changing their slogans to rainbows, people covered head to toe in glitter and instagram posts with feel good slogans. But the authenticity of these motives goes beyond their face value.
Has commercialisation ruined gay pride?
It's important to consider whether genuine support is actually being provided. Do the LGBTQIA+ community benefit from this, are their voices being uplifted? or is it just in fact, well, branding? As we watch brands change their social media icons to the symbol of the rainbow, play close attention to whether they consistently do this in every country they market to. A lot of them don't. In countries where homosexuality is still forbidden, you'll find many companies avoiding showing their support in an attempt not to affect sales.
This contradiction shines a light on the emptiness that can be found at the heart of branded gestures, stripping away it's true meaning.
So what does pride really celebrate?
June pride month marks the commemoration of The Stonewall Riots in 1969 - that changed LGBTQIA+ rights for a lot of people worldwide.
Pride is still political. Although there is a lot of amazing progression for us to celebrate, the injustice of people still suffering all over the world is a crucial reminder of how much more work still needs to be done.
It gains the much needed attention of society, the media and government leaders in order to raise the voices of queer people all over the world. This is so we can pay homage to historic rebels and also fight the current issues we face today. The most important aspect of pride is to support members of the LGBTQIA+ community and challenge prejudice and discrimination. No-one deserves to have to compromise their own identity or suffer simply for the way they live their lives.
It is an ongoing fight for freedom, equality and acceptance.
What does pride mean to you?
Photography & creative direction by Saffron Liberty + Naomi Davison
We decided to use this month to explore what pride means to queer individuals themselves by photographing a series of people in the local LGBTQIA+ community of Brighton. Each photo is accompanied by the individuals answer to the question ‘ what does pride mean to you?’ -
This photo series, accompanied by each individuals answer, allows the queer community and their voices to paint the narrative. The visibility these photos instil alongside the powerful quotations are a reminder to all of us why pride is so invaluable. It's so important to reinforce it's political routes and shift the focus back onto the people this time really belongs to.