LET US STOP LIVING SECRET LIVES:
the visual stories of sex work
Each artist has a personal gallery that includes all of their own photographs.
I am Alex. I am a sex worker. I also have a child and a fiancé and am generally a "normal" human being.
I am a queer, feminist, social worker and sex worker in St. John’s who is calling on the federal government to decriminalize sex work. The current laws make the industry dangerous and I want the lives of sex workers to be valued by everyone.
Alice participated in sex work as a means to pay for her education and as a stepping stone to achieving personal goals.
I am a university student from Western Canada. Sex work allows me the freedom to attend classes + pay rent with a flexible schedule. Though the industry is nothing like I thought it would be, I’ve learned how to adapt in order to be successful. It’s not glamorous, but it gives me more control over my life.
I became a member of this study to share my own experiences of the industry. I have worked in all levels of sex work for 8 years. I have a background in social sciences in criminology, am an avid fitness enthusiast, and a feminist.
I’m a writer by trade and sex worker by choice. I work in the industry to help fund my writing career. This project helped me tell my story when I could not. www.hazelholliday.com
I love science and history.
I am Layla and I am a sex worker. I am also a normal human and I love my dog.
My name is Lisa. I’m 42 years old and I’ve been in the industry for 21 years, on-and-off. I’ve had good experiences and bad experiences and that comes with it all.
Hey! My name is Lizzie Park and I am a sex worker on the West Coast of Newfoundland. I have been doing sex work for a little over 12 years and during that time I have learned a great deal. The biggest thing is that sex is an essential part of our day-to-day lives, not just the physical aspect but the intimacy as well. Legalization would eliminate the shame that people feel towards seeking an alternative means of intimacy. It is for that reason I have chosen to take part in this study, every little bit helps when we are trying to normalize sexuality.
For anonymity I will go by the name Nina. I have worked in the sex industry here in St. John’s NL for approximately 3 years. I have worked alone and with other sex workers to provide dual services. Lately, I have been working less due to the toll it’s taken on my well-being and my desire to re-enter the workforce. I decided to participate in this study to offer my insights and experiences with the hopes of creating a safer working environment for sex workers as well as to reduce the stigma that we are not all uneducated drug-users. I am well-educated, intelligent, and not an addict. I hope this study and exhibit showcases that we all have our reasons for doing this and they are not all sinister. We are just human beings doing what we can to survive, and this line of work at the time may be our only option.
I wanted to give people some insight on the lives of sex workers, and to be a part of something that could potentially help ease the stigma against us. We are human too.
I am 18 years old. I decided to do this study to share my experiences. And to make people aware of how sex work has an impact on the lives of people.
I am 19 years old. I have been involved in the trade since I was 16. I joined this study as a way to cope/grieve. Grieve for my lost childhood and cope with the fact that my decision led me to where I am today.
I’m the health worker that takes care of your mom or your dad when you can’t. You look at me with admiration. How would you see me if you knew what my secret life was? I’m the same person!