"Jesus Days, 1978-1983": Photobook documents the youth of an evangelical closeted gay man

 

Photographer Greg Reynolds created a new photography book documenting his life as a closeted gay evangelical in the late '70s and early '80s. The photobook, Jesus Days, 1978-1983, chronicles Reynold's experiences engaging in evangelical mission projects, leading bible study meetings, and counseling students in his youth group. In Reynolds' Kickstarter video, Reynolds describes how the project came about and what it means to him in his own words:

A while back while visiting my family in Kentucky, I found some dusty boxes of kodachromes in an upstairs closet. I'd not looked at the pictures in over 25 years, mainly because I didn't want to be reminded of a former time in my life, my Jesus Days.

I appeared the model Christian, an evangelical poster boy. I prayed and read my bible everyday, went to church, and resisted sex. But all during these years I had a secret I could not admit to others nor to myself. I loved but was not in love with the girl whom I thought I should marry. And I was in love with my best friend, with whom I never would have a relationship.

Back then, I took the pictures out of curiosity, and the desire to capture a moment. They were not meant to be seen by anyone other than my friends and my family. Without my knowing it at the time, these pictures were actually my first artistic body of work. Looking at the images today, I see all my longing and wishes expressed, things that I could not say in words.

Reynolds is currently seeking funds for his project through Kickstarter. For more information, check out Reynold's full video for his Kickstarter campaign below.

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