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High School Documentary By 16 Year Old Nico Young

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Studying at Santa Monica High in California, 16 year old Nico Young was commissioned by Kathy Ryan, director of photography at New York Times Magazine, to shoot a photo essay and cover for the new issue.

His assignment was to document the timeless rituals of high school, the mad dash between classes, lunchtime cliques, yearbook signings, the prom, and dissections in the science lab. The images capture the subjects of entering the adulthood and leaving the relative safety of high school. Nico has created a set of images that don’t show condescendence or judgement on what is being documented. The most interesting pictures were made when the students were free to be themselves, in a world of their own appreciation of art.

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All images © Nico Young