Camp Sundown is a summerprogram for children and teens diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder named XP-- Xeroderma Pigmentosum that causes extraordinary sensitivity to ultravioletlight. Exposure to even a few minutes of sunlight can cause severe skin burnsand skin cancer.
Camp Sundown operates likeany other camp, but in the negative: day is night. The children sleep late andplay games indoors until the sunsets. At dusk they are free to venture outdoorsand explore the endless opportunities of the night.
For the past three years Ihave been volunteering at the camp, living a reversed life, cut off from whatothers (and the camera) can take for granted: daylight. The long hours spentwith the kids and photographing at camp meant redefining my idea of ‘availablelight.’ Any artificial lighting was forbidden due to the chance of harming thechildren. In order to capture the mood at the camp, I had to use longexposures, which eventually forced me to slow down my working process and learnto be physically present yet invisible. This experience altered my vision andshowed me how to find unconventional beauty where least expected. After a fewdays at camp, my eyes got adjusted to the darkness and began to see what theyhad missed when there was light.