This is Karin and Michelle. I think they were 17 and 15 years at this time. Michelle is literally the girl from next door, or actually across the street. Karin wrote her a note that said “Would you like to be my girlfriend?” Michelle said “yes”. Karin and Michelle were girlfriends for three years. They were really in love and they slept over at each other’s houses. Michelle liked to pretend that Karin was a boy when they went out in public, so Karin wore a really tight body suit so no one could see her breasts. I’m not sure if this was because their town is a small one or because Michelle really thought Karin could be a boy. I admired Karin because she wanted a girlfriend and she got one. Probably she got the idea that it was a big deal because I was her Aunt’s girlfriend.
I always thought how amazing to grow up with a gay Aunt and just get a girlfriend when your a teenager instead of waiting till you leave home.
It was great to photograph them as a young couple in this bucolic landscape, to see gay adolescents living a somewhat normal life. If you look into their eyes, all you can see is that they see each other and they reflect that they are together. It is beyond brave, because thankfully, they never felt the prejudice of their neighbours. Perhaps they were just lucky.