While living in Iowa, I used to devote my weekends to driving the
rural farm roads looking for subjects of interest to photograph.
I would often find abandoned farmhouses and/or barns which
I explored and sometimes photographed. Many of those houses
appeared as if they had been left overnight, the closets with clothes
hanging in them and in one instance the kitchen table set for a meal.
It was as if “something bad happened” as I was told by a farmer.
This was how I came to find, “Calendar Girl,” in an abandoned farmhouse
outside of New Sharon, Iowa. The photograph was lying on the floor
in an attic room with light coming through a window. Underneath the
photograph is some sort of attachment made up of leather straps and metal
buckles (a harness?) likely for a piece of farm equipment. Bits of hay are visible as
well. What appealed to me about the subject was the quality of the light, the
shadow creating a very sharp, almost cutting edge to an image that was
already torn in half. It is miraculous that something so fragile survived
both time and the elements with the primary subject matter, the face, still
Roger Camp is the author of three photography books including the award-winning Butterflies in Flight, Thames & Hudson, 2002. His work has appeared in over 150 magazines including The New York Quarterly, New England Review, Redivider, Carolina Quarterly, and Lumina.