face /fās/

  1. confront and deal with or accept.

for·ward /ˈfôrwərd/

  1. onward so as to make progress.



For 36 years, Outfest has played an influential role in building community by connecting diverse populations to discover, discuss and celebrate stories of LGBTQ lives. The annual festival is one of the most revered venues for LGBTQ filmmakers to present and celebrate their films with audiences.

OUTFEST: FACE FORWARD is a live photography project honoring the individuals that make up and support Outfest by showcasing the diversity of age, color, gender identity and sexual identity.  Black-and-white portraits of the attendees declare the emotion, strength and beauty of each participant — creating a timeless work of art.

Designed for immediate impact, FACE FORWARD will capture and display images throughout the run of the festival. During the festival photographs can be showcased on monitors at various venues, within the theaters, on social media, and via other media as Outfest sees fit.

Audiences will be able to download, tag and share their photographs on social media, thereby increasing the festival’s reach and influence. My previous images were well-liked and shared, often used as for profile images across social media platforms. After the conclusion of the festival, high-resolution images will be delivered to Outfest so selected photographs may be printed as unique artworks for display at future events.

The lack of a central physical hub for the festival may seem like a challenge to the sense of connection felt by the attendees. In reality, this is an opportunity for Outfest to physically and geographically reach across communities in new ways. FACE FORWARD will visually unite the festival, forwarding the organization's mission of building connections and expanding this vital community — the people who make celebrating almost four decades of OUTFEST in LA possible. 


Hi, I’m Bryan Darling!

I’m a queer filmmaker and photographer. From exploring the lives of trans women breaking free of the tropes of sex work and abuse to exploring pornography’s role in gay men’s identities and the rights movement, I’ve sought projects that unearth new perspectives in our LGBTQ experience. 

Outfest has been an exciting and important part of my story as an artist. My work, including SEED MONEY, I WANT YOUR LOVE and the Emmy-nominated series HER STORY, have been showcased at Outfest. My first job in Los Angeles was as Communications Coordinator for the festival, the same year of my first credit as a feature film editor on I WANT YOUR LOVE.

Over the years I’ve photographed and filmed many of the attendees and filmmakers of Outfest, amongst other events. My relationship with the festival, filmmakers, and attendees provides me with the unique ability to capture intimate and exhilarating photographs.

From nightclubs and bars to gay rodeos and film festivals, I’ve been photographing and documenting queer culture for the last decade. What began from innate curiosity revealed that the lines around race, gender, and sexuality are more fluid inside queer spaces and communities than allowed for by the politics outside their doors. My work has shown in galleries and hangs on the walls of collectors across the globe.

I’m excited, and would be honored, to celebrate the diverse individuals that make up this extraordinary community that is the Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival.

With love,
Bryan Darling