On Seeing, A Journal #429

Growing Up: Klara Jenkins

Tuesday, April 27, 2021




I have studied over 200 children from childhood into their 20’s.  I began with some when their mothers were pregnant, and others, as was the case with Klara, started about the time they could read and write.  For all of them I made annual studio portraits and asked them to write answers to a series of questions, a kind of diary about their lives, their feelings, their hopes, their regrets.
I am interested in everything about human development. I am fascinated by maturation, growth, emotional, educational and physical development.  My exploration, a major 30 year odyssey, has been an adventure that has yielded riches beyond my imagining.

This wonderful young person was always a joy to see.  I have been so impressed with her, and, we are friends—you’ll see…read on.

8 years old
A  month before Klara returned I did a photoshoot of the famous soccer star, David Beckham, for Sports Illustrated and Adidas. After the shoot, Beckham gave me a  soccer ball which he signed, “To Howard, Thank-you, David Beckham, 7″.
When Klara came for her next shoot, I gave the ball to her. One can only imagine the reaction.
I made a friend forever.

10 years old

11 years old
12 years old
13 years old
14 years old
15 years old
16 years old
1 7 years old
19 years old
20 years old
21 years old
22 years old
27 years old (still a jock!)
Thanks for taking part in my “Growing Up” project Klara.
You brought us much happiness every time you came over.
I feel certain your life will continue to be fulfilling and joyful.
How about meet me on the tennis court one day?
Permission was signed by the parents of each and every child every year, and by the participants themselves once they turned 18. In addition, we have now sent copies of all of their writings and edited photographs to the participants for whom I have finished all my editing and have received full permission from that group to publish and post.