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Kainaz Amaria November 6, 2009

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in United States.
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Jamey, 18 & one month pregnant, shares a smoke with her mother moments before her wedding. Ohio, 2007

Kainaz Amaria (b. 1978, USA & India) is a photojournalist and multimedia producer with a B.A. in international relations from Boston University (2000) and a M.A. in visual communication from Ohio University (2008). After OU she completed photography internships at US News & World Report in Washington D.C. and with the St. Petersburg Times in Florida. Her images and multimedia projects have been recognized by numerous contests including the CPOY, Women in Photojournalism, Atlanta Photojournalism Conference, the NPPA Multimedia Contest, the Society of American Business Editors and Writers and by the South Asian Journalist Association. Kainaz was recently awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to Mumbai, India, where she will be based beginning November 2009.

About the Photograph:

“I made this image while working on my first picture essay during my graduate studies at Ohio University. The essay was a broad look at how the coal mining industry effected Southeastern Ohio. Coal mining once dominated this Appalachian region, however as the resource ran out, corporations left town leaving the surrounding communities in dire economic conditions. While spending time with people in this region, I witnessed the cyclical nature of poverty passed down from one generation to another. Many times it began with teenagers having children with little resources to raise a family. I wanted to somehow capture that in an image. I met Jamey at her high school prom. She and her boyfriend were inseparable on the dance floor, and as they passionately embraced I began making their picture. They later told me that Jamey was pregnant and they were getting married the following weekend.”

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“I spent a week with Jamey, documenting her life leading up to her wedding day, her teenage emotions ran from sheer excitement to a quiet terror. The day of the wedding, which she planned on her own in less than two weeks, Jamey was frantic and felt as if she was failing everyone. Moments before walking down the aisle, she snuck out of the church for a cigarette with her mother, who had Jamey when she was a teenager. The image captures three generations; mother, daughter and an unborn baby girl.”