I grew up in a small, conservative, Northwest Ohio town void of much opportunity or diversity. I come from a tightly knit religious family who raised me with conservative values. Looking back on my past I saw a curious child who was shielded from what seemed to be the norm for my friends and classmates.
My mother served as an aide in my photographing. Together we scouted rural locations that captured the essence of my hometown. In the beginning I thought of myself as being stuck or sheltered. I never intended these emotions to be negative, but my mother took offense to them. As I further explored my memories I considered my mother's sentiment. I realized that a more accurate way to portray my childhood was with a sense of wonder. These photographs are not meant to shed a bad light on my childhood but to serve as a thank you to my parents for their devotion to my upbringing. I now realize that rather than being sheltered— I was protected. With this protection I was and still am able to dream. Revisiting places significant to my past reminded me of being a child feeling small in a wide expanse full of opportunities.
All of the images are shot on medium format black and white film and developed in the darkroom. Processing everything myself allowed me to reminisce with the emotions and memories portrayed in the photographs. In the end I discovered that if I had been raised differently my experiences would not be so wonderful and special to me.