PHOTO GALLERY: Queer at Work

Jay / 22 / On my college campus

“Practicing for the senior reading where I’ll read work from my first chapbook Bitter Baguettes, a collection of pieces about queerness, gender, surviving abuse, and mental illness. Also working on the mock up of my next chapbook, which is all about food! Specifically food love poetry! I have lots of hopeful intentions for my writing, but lately with my food love poetry, I hope readers feel loved and can connect to food and people in their life in a loving way.”

Elena Novak / 25 / Pontevedra, Spain

“Myself (in the middle) and two friends preparing to record activists’ favorite hit “I Can’t Keep Quiet” by MILCK. We wanted to show solidarity with the Resistance in the U.S. by recording the song from Spain, where we worked. It’s on YouTube now!”

Alice / 24 / Italy

“In the past few years I’ve done many random jobs while finishing up college and working in a summer kindergarten with the cutest tiny kids was probably my favourite (and I for sure had more fun than them!). Just one of the few things I hope I taught them: there are no ‘boys’ or ‘girls’ toys. One of the things they taught me: NEVER use sarcasm with children. (Note: I’m aware that the bubble I made has a somewhat phallic shape. It was totally on purpose. If they call me back to work there in July I’ll try to make some boobs.)

I didn’t manage to take a picture but right now I’m doing what I like to think as ‘bringing happiness to people’ aka I work in a take-away pizzeria (I’m Italian after all). Sometimes I do the deliveries myself and I had the pleasure to see some great (and also some weird) stuff like: cute girls, lovely dogs, teeny tiny babies. My favourite things so far: a dog eating the money I was going to be paid with, a guy giving me a joint as a tip, a twelve year old birthday party with like 15 kids all wearing animal onesies, FREE PIZZA ALMOST EVERYDAY.”

Bee / 27 / Sacramento, CA

“I really struggled to figure out how to capture my work in picture form and I ended up feeling like I needed two images (or 50, but I think these two cover it decently). I am the project manager for three autism research projects. My job is incredibly broad and I do something different every single day. So here are two pictures of me at work, across the range of what I do. One is a picture of the INSIDE of my head, as my team members and I did training to be MRI operators and practiced on each other.  The other is me and the 12ft cardboard pirate ship I designed for the huge party we hold for all our kids and their families as a thank you for being a part of our research.  My work is hectic, wild, exhausting, and something I love doing every single day!”

Ashley / 27 /Burnaby, Canada

“I am waiting for my coworkers to finish up for the day so we can head to the local pub; of course, this is after a long day spent updating the refrigeration design for a new grocery store I am working on.”

Susie / 32 / Leeds, UK

“I am a printmaking instructor at an art college in Leeds, in the north of England. I teach such things as screenprint, lino cut, etching, bookbinding, monoprint, fabric dyeing, letterpress and bookbinding. This picture was taken on a rare moment, first thing in the morning, when the print workshop was not swarming with students. Printmaking is a social artform to begin with, and helping the students work through their creations is good for my introvert tendencies. Plus sometimes I fix the printing presses and things, which is good for my soft butch aspirations.”

Kass / 35 / Ethel’s in Columbus, OH

“Because my day job making vegan bacon involves an oh-so-sexy hairnet, I’ve opted to submit photos from my other “job” performing stand-up.”

Clark / 21 / Reno, NV

“I work as a research assistant in a lab at my university. We do research on how to make plants grow better in arid lands, so we work with a lot of succulents, which are my favorite! Being involved in climate change related research, there’s been a lot of anxiety in our lab lately. These pics are of me in the greenhouse, which is my favorite place to work. The plants in the second pic I grew from tiny shoots when I first started working here 2 years ago!”

Kelsey / 31 / Boulder, CO

“I’m a physicist at a government research laboratory, and these are photos of me with my favorite pieces of lab equipment. My lab’s job is to make very high precision photon detectors (photo #1 shows the insides of the instrument that keep the detectors cold, photo #2 is me assembling the bit that detects the light). Then we help other scientists use them to study anything you can learn about by bouncing x-rays off of it. In the last couple of years, for example, we’ve helped a group in Sweden look at a weird iron compound that might make solar cells cheaper someday, and a group in California study the chemical reactions that happen during photosynthesis. My job is awesome and I love it and am fortunate to have it. But like most STEM it is very straight white guy dominated, so I hope to both be the gay I want to see in the world, and support the success of more queer/women/POC scientists.”

Hannah / 18 / Southern CA

“I’m currently finishing off a study on park proximity and race (the map shows my study locations) for my environmental science class.  This is my first long-term research project, and I’m super excited to do more when I start college in the fall!  The picture on the left is me being awkward at my school’s awards ceremony.”

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8See entire article on one page

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


lnj has written 310 articles for us.


  1. My heart squeezes every time I look through these galleries. So many beautiful queer people doing beautiful things. Sigh.

  2. look at all of you working hard! jealous of arielle’s homemade barbacoa and jay’s where the wild things are sweater, and kind of wishing i was surrounded by succulents rn.

  3. This is like meeting the Kara Danvers and Clark Kent selves of the Superheroes you hang out with on the regular at the gaylien bar, only to realize they’re even cooler in RL.

  4. Hi queer babes! I fell in love like, 20 times!

    Also hi Rachel from Chicago! I met you last August at the Autostraddle brunch meet up and you gave me your cognac ! Thank you that was so niiiice ❤️

    • Oh hai, Chloe! It was so lovely to meet you! That was the day of the Air and Water show wasn’t it? Super loud jet planes kept going by :)

  5. I love this series so much although I am too shy to submit one myself…this one is my favorite so far! I love seeing what cool jobs everyone has and what everyone likes and doesn’t like about their jobs. If I ever feel like I need a career change I’m totally gonna come back to this gallery for some inspiration!

  6. Soo many cool people and cool jobs here, this is amazing. Also, I noticed this round of images had more people in SoCal than the last two rounds, but I could be wrong?

  7. GAAAH!! I love ALL the photos!! *heart eyes emoji* You all have cool jobs! Special shout out to Hannah and Kim – reminds me of Grey’s Anatomy?? LOL And Priscilla’s window shot with the CN Tower – super awesome!! And Erin!! That Orphan Black – Cosima’s DNA laptop cover you made as screensaver??!!! Sestra!!! :) The final trip is in just less than 2 weeks!!

      • We’ve never gotten to deliver a lesbian couple together before! That’s my dream :) If you’re in indianapolis and need labor and delivery services, let me know!0

    • Hahaha it is a little like Grey’s! We met at work and tried to keep our falling in love a secret, especially since I wasn’t out yet. But we’ve come a long way! Everyone at work is super supportive, and the only thing we get harassed about it when we’ll have a baby.

  8. Damn, I knew I was forgetting to do something. Oh well.

    Very much appreciating the cluttered-desk representation here.

  9. Don’t mind me, just crying over every pic and description ???ya’ll are so sweet and wondrous and lovely.

  10. Everyone looks so beautiful and happy! Thank you for sharing a glimpse into your queer lives. Wish I submitted but alas, it was too late

  11. OH NO!!!!!!! I was so looking forward to this post and totally missed it! Ugh! Oh well, y’all will just have to imagine me lugging around heavy lumber and using power tools all day.

    But also, wow! y’all are so amazing and inspiring with your big beautiful brains and killer work ethic.

  12. Eva in Los Angeles, that “fingering chart” had me in stitches. Great photo prep!

    Y’all look so awesome and I’m jealous of all the amazing jobs you have! I hope if we do another version of this in a year’s time that I too will be able to post about a cool job, instead of cheating and showing some activist stuff!

  13. I can’t post photos of my workspace so I’m living vicariously through the rest of these beautiful humans!

    And Liz, I see you representing <3 #indystraddlers

  14. Wow!! Just Wow!!

    All you clever, talented, beautiful, thoughtful and brilliant people. The world’s definitely better for having you all in it.

  15. After looking at all the photos (and it’s so great to see so many people in their own world!) I wonder do Autostraddle readers tend not to have white collar jobs or do those of us with one feel embarrassed about taking part in this?

    • idk about embarrassed, but desk jobs make for less interesting photographs, and I don’t know how old you are, but my jobs got more office-y as I got older, and it was much more interesting to photograph me making waffle cones or wrangling dogs or making art projects with kiddos, and AS tends to skew definitely toward folks in their 20s, maybe that’s it? (I know there are others! I’m 33! but like, I’m not wrong that there’s a strong cohort of folks in their 20s)

      and I think some folks worry their white collar jobs are boring to talk about if you’re not in the field? and I know folks who are like “I have a fancy job and have a lot of money” are very sheepish about talking about it in public.

      in conclusion, idk.

      • You make very good points fellow 33 year old!

        “Here is me on draft 17 of the strategy” is probably not a good photo.


    Legit though yall are adorable and it’s nice to see all the kinds of jobs folks have.

  17. PRISCILA!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Y’all are rad AF. And Cute AF.
    Why is everyone so cute.

  18. I’m always in the worng part of the world… I work for a sand factory but it seems to me that I’ll have to change the mining type and get into coal. That way I’d get to go to Canada and meet fellow queers.

  19. I’m always in the wrong part of the world… I work for a sand factory but it seems to me that I’ll have to change the mining type and get into coal. That way I’d get to go to Canada and meet fellow queers.

  20. I can’t believe there is someone posting from South Los Angeles! I am an Americorp (volunteer) member at another school, but my program serves Normandie Ave. Elementary! Cool to know there are people everywhere in places that are familiar to me. Keep doing good work Eva!!!

  21. This actually made me cry. I’m so proud to belong to this beautiful queer community. <3

Comments are closed.