Welcome to City Upon a Hill: Hopes in America, an ongoing project exploring the lives of the people in the United States of America.

The first series in the project – “Transcontinental” was completed in the fall and winter of 2017. In it, I crossed the entire continent by train, meeting people, hearing their stories, and creating their portraits. Selections of the portraits and interviews from Transcontinental enjoyed a solo exhibition at Thymele Arts in Los Angeles from May to October 2018.

In this digital presentation, portraits are paired with with extensive excerpts from the conversations I had with the subjects. Only the subjects’ words are quoted on these pages. In prompting them to share stories rather than answer narrow questions, my goal was to limit my presence to the editorial rather than the authorial – hopefully I have succeeded. One unifying question was asked of everyone: “What is your hope for the future?” Their statements of hope form the main page of this site.

In presenting the interviews in this way, my hope is that you can meet these people in their places and hear their voices. Beyond this introduction, I hope to share their stories, not my own – because with this project, my story has been the privilege of hearing all of theirs.