Marovich thinks he has at least two more years photographing the steel towns, and as he meets more people, more stories come along.
Marovich has been trying to get into an operating steel mill to make photos but has so far been turned down. He covered politicians campaigning in the economically stressed region and plans another story based around sports. Then there’s the guy at the barbershop who served time in jail and is now trying raise his kids.
“Every time you turn around, it seems there’s this other cool facet you can dig into,” Marovich said. The sidebars are often interesting, but he’s learned that he still needs to focus on that main story.
“Be careful of how far down the rabbit holes you want to go,” he advised.
Marovich has also used his school studies in computer science as a skill to build out a website, searchingfordreamstreet.org. He plans to add video and audio interviews he has recorded. A book and a traveling print exhibit are also possible.
He has also been named the winner of the 2017 White House News Photographers Association Project Grant for this project. The $5,000 grant is designed to financially help a member of the WHNPA to pursue an in-depth project.
Marovich continues to search for Dream Street. There are stories his parents tell of the days when these small-town streets were packed with stores and shoppers. The people who know those stories are dying off. That’s why he continues to work on this and to show the work as widely as possible. He has to explain why these stories are important.
Pete Marovich is an independent photographer based in Washington, D.C. You can see his work at his website. He is also a founding member of American Reportage, a collective of photojournalists.