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Photographer Matt Black grew up in California’s Central Valley. He has dedicated his life to documenting the area’s small towns and farmers.

Last year, he says he realized what had been a mild drought was now severe. It had simply stopped raining.

“It was kind of a daily surreal thing to walk outside,” Black says.

The focus of Black’s photography, he says, is on documenting the drought’s impact on communities that he believes rarely receive the attention they deserve.

A Landscape Of Abundance Becomes A Landscape Of Scarcity

Photo credit: Courtesy of Matt Black

Oakland, California. High School Youth. Typical of the youth of this nation is the tipped-up bottle of pop. Also typical is the school store, situated just across the street from the school, which sells candy, coca-cola, and cigarettes and at lunch time, a five-cent plate of beans, 05/04/1940

Rondal Partridge, photographer. From the series: Study of Youth Photographs, 1940. Records of the National Youth Administration, 1934 - 1945