Letting illustration tell the individual hopes behind the fight for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. When words aren't enough, let art speak instead.

Monday, June 29, 2009


"What cannot be achieved in one lifetime will happen when
one lifetime is joined to another."
- Harold Kushner

Yesterday was the Gay Pride Parade in New York City, and it was my first Pride event. Up until yesterday, I never really understood the relevance of Pride. It was my thought that people already understand that yes, we're here and we're queer, but now it's our job to help them get used to it. And the vocal extreme fringe minorities that I thought of when Gay Pride came to mind, were not the way to do it.

After going to the parade, yesterday, my feelings began to change. I began to see that Pride isn't about flaunting yourself, it's about camaraderie. It's about being able to go out and see the overwhelming sense of unity and support that are present in the gay community. Being able to step out anywhere in the city and feel a sense of belonging, and yes, Pride in oneself and one's community, is a wonderful feeling. A feeling that I hope soon, everyone will be able to experience. So although this was only my first Pride Parade, it won't be my last!

Writer/Illustrator - Evan Turk - Manhattan, New York

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Holding Hands

"Happiness always looks small while you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and you learn at once how big and precious it is."
- Maxim Gorky

Even though holding hands is such an innocent and affectionate gesture, it can still inspire great amounts of intolerance and hate. I've been spat at and had insults hurled at me, simply for holding hands with another man while walking together on the street. I've often had to question whether it was okay to hold hands with someone, out of fear of what might happen in the wrong neighborhood. In most places today in Manhattan, I can walk hand in hand with another man and not feel strange about it, but that is not the case everywhere in the country, and it wasn’t always the case here. Some gay couples in the 1970’s were even arrested for holding hands in public in the West Village. Through decades of hard work and perseverance, members of the LGBT community have made it safer for same-sex couples to hold hands, but only in safe enclaves such as Manhattan. It is my hope that through the continuing fight for equality it will always be okay to hold the hand of the one you love, no matter where you are.

Writer/Illustrator - Evan Turk - Manhattan, New York


Hello and welcome to "A Picture For A Thousand Voices!"

Through all the constant talk about the gay marriage amendments across the country, I feel like there has been very little conversation about why the LGBT (Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) equal rights movement is important. I've even had friends of mine who support gay rights ask me "If a civil union can afford all of the same rights as a marriage, then what's the big deal if the name is different?" The point that I would like to make is that marriage equality is not the end goal of the equal rights movement, it is merely a stepping stone. The road to equality means something different to each individual across the country as part of a move towards acceptance and equal treatment within the community.

"A Picture For A Thousand Voices" is a project that seeks to help establish a dialogue between members of the LGBT community and the straight community about why the equal rights movement is a fight worth fighting. Since words have often been falling on deaf ears, I would hope that perhaps through art and illustration, these ideas can be better understood by both the straight and LGBT communities.

If you are an illustrator, ask yourself or your LGBT friends what their hopes for equal rights are and send me (evan@evanturk.com) your artwork. If you’re not an artist, send in your story, and someone can help illustrate your hope for equal rights (this includes non-gay members of the gay community!). If you are an artist and would like to be involved but don't have a story to illustrate, e-mail me and I'll find you one.

The idea of equal rights is about understanding others, not just tolerating them. If we can show others, and remind ourselves, why this fight is important, it will be that much easier to win.

Thank you, and Happy Pride Week!

-Evan Turk