“This is the story of my life, except that the part I am choosing to tell you is just a little piece of it. When you’re living through it, though, especially when you are twelve and you think the whole world is changing until you realize it isn’t the world, it’s you, no piece seems little. It’s all so big you think it can kill you. But it doesn’t. Which is why the story goes on.” – James Howe, Misfits
We have all navigated the rocky terrain of adolescence in our own lives–however more or less successfully. We carry memory like a scar, and finger it gently as we remember, rejoice, regret. For some there are no scars, only wounds.
To say that adolescence is a stage is true in more than one sense of the word. Not only do eleven- to fourteen-year-olds pass through a stage of life, they inhabit a stage in the theater: It is an age of theatrics, of trying on and discarding identities, of testing roles, of revising scripts. Theirs is a dynamic act on the way to truth. They play the child, the adult, and the fool, all in the same scene.
This embodiment of the past, future, and present in one face is fascinating. It is the distillation of Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights into one gangly body. With a sense of wonder, we discern both the latent beauty and heartache in a half-formed person; we see what they are yet blind to.
“With our imagination as well as our eyes, that is to say like artists,” wrote Frederick Buechner, “we must see not just their faces but the life behind and within their faces. Here it is love that is the frame we see them in.”
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This series was featured in part in LensWork Magazine, in January, 2005, including images, text, and an audio interview; and in View Camera Magazine, 9 pages, Sept/Oct 2011.
A very limited number of hand-printed and delicately toned 4×5 gelatin silver prints are $300.
A very limited quantity of hand-printed and toned 16×20 prints are available for $650 each.
Carbon printed 16×20 images are available for $450. Contact me for purchase.