During the years 2004-2009, my work often took me to Camp Lejeune, a large Marine base on the North Carolina Coast.
During these visits I noticed many homemade banners hanging on a fence along the public highway passing the main gate.
Many of these banners, made to welcome returning Marines back from combat duty, were so striking and touching that I began taking pictures of some of them.
These banners are a particularly well-developed custom at this base. I saw them as a kind of "folk art" showing the persistence of life and love in wartime, among the families who carry a special piece of the burden of combat.
The banners were also very ephemeral: most hung there til wind and weather brought them down. These photographs are likely their only record.