SYRACUSE.- Life comes at us at a maddening pace. Seasons come and go. We grow up, mature, and soon notice next generations pushing up from behind us. We too were the youngest once, and remember those days fondly as we help the next generation through their struggles of adolescence. This is the cycle of life, but most of us would prefer slowing down the changes within and around us.
Blake Fitch alters that pace by allowing us a look at the gradual transition of two girls into young women. The images convey the respect the photographer has for Katie and Julia, and the celebration of their youthful beauty. Shown as snippets of life, the photographs capture an age span during which many changes occur both emotionally and physically. The images fast-forward through different points in the girls lives as their self-image changes along with their bodies. While the photographs capture the intense friendship between the two girls, who are cousins, the images also suggest a high level of trust toward the photographer, who is Katies older sister. When the girls look up in the picture, they see someone very close to them, not the mechanics of the camera. Sometimes the collaborative effort of creating the images takes the shape of a playful performance, such as in the photograph of Katie dancing in the driveway, while in other images the camera is graciously invited to share quiet and private moments. The girls have allowed the camera into their lives, and it is in this trusting environment that the girls growth and maturity unfolds.