In the fall of 1972, Bill Yates traveled through the countryside in the vicinity of Tampa, Florida. At that time, he was studying photography at the University of South Florida. One day, 26-year-old Bill discovered an institution for roller skating called Sweetheart Roller Skating.
The photographer returned there at night and documented the teenagers having a lot of fun. It turned out almost 800 pictures, thanks to which Yates eventually collected a portfolio and got into the Rhode Island School of Design.
In the early 1970s, photographer Bill Yates shot a series of portraits at the Rollerdrome in Tampa, Florida. In one photo, a teenager stands shirtless with a large bottle of schnapps tucked into the waistband of his jeans. Another shows a boy who looks no older than 12 years old, posing with a cigarette in his mouth. Then it was considered "cool".
The roller rink was a place where children could escape from their parents into their own world, where they could drink, smoke and cuddle in the back seats of cars. In the black-and-white images, teenagers of the "baby boomer" generation stare intently at Yates ' camera, trying to look adult and independent.