In 2010, I moved from The Netherlands to Evergreen, Colorado, for three years. My new home environment was very different, confusing, and intriguing at the same time. Of course I grew up watching American movies, shows, and videoclips. And of course, in real life I would sometimes recognize similar places and people from those fictive scenes. In truth, it felt like I was living in a constructed reality show — and the mix of fiction and reality confused me. More important, I feared my new life would fade like a dream when I would return home…that all this would be forgotten.

By turning my fascination for the people and places into images, the dream became a memory. A memory of my foreign life in the Rocky Mountains and a memory of my personal discovery out here. This series is really about me, finding out who I am and how I view things. And trying to understand people and the American culture around me.

I felt like an anthropologist trying to comprehend people’s rules, customs, and ways of thinking. By making the images, I was able to feel less alienated, more aware of my emotions. Looking for the moments that touched me. Affected by beauty, loneliness, affection, horror, oddness, or more likely a combination of all those things. This is my personal view and journal of my life in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, area code 80439.

—Vivian Keulards

Editor’s Note: We discovered Vivian Keulards’ work at LensCulture Fotofest 2013.