I’ve been photographing LGBT political events, protests, and more for years now. I am sort of the official gay photographer of Utah. And I have been watching and documenting the rise and fall of Amendment 3. So I was thrilled when I was hired to be a lifestyle photographer and photojournalist to tell the story of 2 of the couples behind the court case challenging Amendment 3 in court.
One of the couples is a lesbian couple—we have Kody Partridge and Laurie Wood. They are both educators and they live in Salt Lake City, Utah. They also have a greenhouse they had built in their backyard. That became the key focus when I arrived to photograph them. We started photographing in the greenhouse as they harvested some veggies.
We then moved inside to photograph them preparing their lunch with fresh greenhouse veggies. We had talked before hand of things they might want to feature in their lifestyle shoot and gardening and cooking seemed like the obvious choice.
We finished the shoot with some more formal portraits in their living room. We did some photos with their dog and some without.
The other couple I photographed was Derek Kitchen and Moudi Sbeity. Moudi is from Lebanon. I’ll confess I love to find people’s backstory and where their families come from and how people meet. They are the owners of Laziz. Because of Sbeity’s background they decided to sell Middle Eastern spreads such as hummus, toum, and muhammara. I’ve ended up buying some of their spreads and the muhammara and hummus are perfect for eating vegetables.
I met up with the couple at their store front. They live in an artist area where you both rent your apartment and your business front from the same location. That is pretty cool—an easy commute. This morning they were heading to the winter Salt Lake Farmers Market. So I photographed their preparation and then some of their sales and interactions at the farmers market. It is always fun to watch small businesses. Hooray for America!
We met up the next day to photograph them at home. They were preparing a Middle Eastern soup that I was able to sample and it was delicious. Turns out all the lifestyle portraits ended up with both couples cooking in the kitchen.
I had a blast photographing the two families and will be following the court case with much interest. And I also want to express my condolences. Since I photographed Derek and Moudi their dog Goji passed away. It is always heartbreaking to lose a pet. He was part of their family, a friend, and a great dog.