Lived Experience

Reflections on LGBTQ Life

A beautiful series of full-color portraits of LGBTQ people over the age of fifty

“My advice to the younger generation is to live your life with as much passion and as much indulgence as you possibly can. Do not do anything to anyone that you would not have done to yourself. Just live life as a wonderful, wonderful experience.”
—Evelyn Whitaker, from Lived Experience

Even with the extraordinary strides the LGBTQ movement has made in civil rights, acceptance, and visibility over the past half century, a growing portion of the community remains largely invisible, its concerns relegated to the margins.

In the latest in a groundbreaking series of beautiful photobooks on LGBTQ communities around the world—from Russia to Mexico to Japan—French-Senegalese photographer Delphine Diallo centers on the voices and lives of older LGBTQ people in the United States, a generation that has been ravaged by the AIDS epidemic but has also been instrumental in extraordinary progress in LGBTQ rights and visibility in this country.

The series of fifty full-color portraits of LGBTQ people from across the nation—interviewed on the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall riots that led to the modern LGBTQ rights movement—offers this wise and resilient cohort a chance to share their stories and reflections. With a special focus on people of color, Lived Experience is a celebration of an underserved, neglected part of the LGBTQ world in America and an inspiration to future generations.

Lived Experience was designed by Emerson, Wajdowicz Studios (EWS).


“Comprised of over sixty beautiful portraits of people from all walks of life, together with interviews conducted by Diallo, Lived Experience honors and celebrates their rich, complex, and varied lives, offering unforgettable stories and intimate reflections on love and loss, on family and friendship, on building community, and the importance of remembering the past and the LGBTQ movement’s radical roots.”

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