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ONE PHOTO – ONE STORY

05.11.2014

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“The girl in the picture is called Courtney. Her family lives in Conesville. If you blink when you pass through the town you can miss it completely. I happened to drive by the trailer where she lives with her family, and I got talking with her father. Later on, I took pictures of the family and of the children in particular. Courtney’s sister showed me a tiara she was given when she won the Watermelon Queen title. Watermelons are the main crop in the area around Conesville, and Watermelon Days are a community festival. Courtney also dreams of becoming Watermelon Queen one day. Her sister put the Tiara on Courtney’s head. Courtney suddenly placed her hands together and I quickly made this frame. I didn’t even bring the camera up to my eye – I just tripped the shutter release while the camera was still around my neck. Later on, the picture was put on the cover of Driftless. I drove to the family with one of the first copies. They were all delighted; only Courtney didn’t react. Later she explained, “The picture makes us look poor.” I’ll never forget that moment when she first looked at the picture.”

You will find the full-length essay in LFI 8/2014.

Danny Wilcox Frazier

Born in Iowa. After studying photography he moved far away. When his wife became pregnant they moved back. Since then he has been documenting change in America. Driftless was published as a book in 2007. He received the Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize the same year.


www.reduxpictures.com
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