As the year draws to a close, It’s a time to look back on things that happened over the past twelve months. Over the next few days, we’ll be revisiting some of our favorite stories from throughout the year, and seeing again what they mean for 2015 in review.
This story was originally published on May 23, 2015.
Photographer Sarah Wong spent the past 13 years documenting the journeys of a group of kids who either identify as transgender or question the gender they were assigned at birth. The result, a photo series called Inside Out, lets the children present as they see themselves — it's like a wonderfully gender-affirming game of dress-up.
Wong, who's Dutch, began the project when she was asked to do a photo book for a children's hospital. "The parents of [transgender] children saw this book on broadcast and called me. They [also] wanted such a book. A week later we met and the children immediately touched my heart," Wong told us over email.
The portraits show the subjects at a variety of ages, posing as they wish and dressing how they feel most comfortable — regardless of the gender they were each assigned at birth. The children's parents wanted to keep them anonymous, so some portraits are accompanied by the subjects' ages, but never names.
Sometimes, the subjects look confidently into the camera, proud of their sports victories or showing off their cute outfits. Sometimes, they seem like every disaffected teenager on the planet, lounging on the sofa and waiting for the shot to be over with so they can get back to what they were doing.
Simply put: They look like kids.