This home in Rockport Massachusetts beckoned me to capture its unique seacoast charm after I noticed the many old lobster buoys adorning the entrance. As I was speaking to the owners wife,she told me her husband had collected these authentic buoys along the shoreline years ago and this quaint scene had been featured in magazines more than once.
Rockport Massachusetts was one stop on my brief new england photo trip and shooting this classic scene was among my goals. I learned something new about this spot after hearing a term mentioned by three separate people in about an hours time. This place is referred to as motif number one,and is located on Bradley Wharf in the harbor town of Rockport, Massachusetts.It is a fishing shack well-known to students of art and art history as “the most often-painted building in America.” It is even listed on my atlas as motif one,which surprised me. It s very interesting to watch the fisherman stand in these little boats in the foreground to paddle out to their fishing boats in the morning. Super storm Sandy undermined one wall at the harbor but they escaped with much less damage than most. Our motel owner said the water came up to the ice machine there and the motel sits about 40 feet or more above the ocean and they stayed for the whole storm.
My mother recently joked about an experience I had in maine a few years back, so I figured I would share the memory here. My wife and I were on a new england vacation, and had stopped in Cape Porpoise in Kennebunkport Maine to look around at several shops and I also wanted to do some photography. While there my wife got the brilliant idea to do a whale watch, but the idea of going 25 miles out to sea in a small boat was not my idea of fun,but since it was clear blue skies and totally calm seas, I said sure. We headed out and kept going and going and going, and about halfway out it gets cloudy, and I thought no big deal. When we are nearing the whale area, the captain comes on the loud-speaker to say conditions look like they are going to deteriorate and we wont be staying long. Well things did deteriorate rapidly and just as my wife tries to shoot a whale coming out of the water, I grab her to tell her how horrible I am feeling,and she basically says go get sick somewhere else so I can enjoy the whales. Anyway, the waves were rolling now at 6-8ft and the whole way back in, the captain literally was riding the waves with his boat till we crashed into waves ahead of us. I was certain we were going to be lost in this storm, and because I was sick, we sat on the outside of the boat as everyone huddled inside with life preservers on. The two parts of this trip that are the most indelibly etched in my mind are when I went inside to use the bathroom, everyone was watching me head to the door, and as I open the door, this poor woman is standing there with her clothes around her ankles and the whole crowd looking at her. I thought who lets a door unlocked in that state? The second memory is of these two teenage girls who stood on the very top of the boat in the front and screamed with utter joy as we crashed into each wave. I thought we were dead and they were having the time of their lives, so I guess it’s all in your perspective. Needless to say whale watches are no longer high on my to do list. I remember getting to shore and hearing a crew member say, the captain told them it was the worst conditions he had ever navigated, but I am not sure what that meant since he was only about 25 years old. This photo was taken that day, but its nothing earth shattering.
Since we are now into the weekend, I thought maybe its time to share another one of my misadventures near water. That blurred man in the lower photo is me standing on a beach in washington state alongside one of several dozen huge tees washed ashore. My morning started out with my wife and I taking in the beauty along the washington coast, and as you can see, sunny blue skies were in abundance. I said, lets walk all the way down to that island, which you can see in the background of my image, and I calculated it to be only a half hours walk. Well, we walked and walked, rested and walked, and as we get within a hundred yards of the island, you could see a fog bank quickly coming in off the ocean. I thought oh that’s neat, but that was only up until the fog got so thick that you could only see 10 to 20 yards in front of you.
Now in most situations fog would not bother me, but guess what? As soon as that fog hit us, you could literally see the tide starting to come in, and on a normal beach one would just move up on the boardwalk or something similar, but considering the entire length of this beach was strewn with trees that had trunks 10 feet around, it was quite clear,we were not getting over them, and had to get back to the parking lot quickly. I was like a marine corps drill sergeant, telling my wife to keep moving as fast as she could, and carrying all my gear was really wearing me out. We went on and on, and waves were washing ever closer the entire time, and the final straw was realizing the little sign marking the parking area was nowhere to be found in the fog. we had no idea if we passed the lot a half mile ago, or had a half mile to go, UNTIL we saw the lovely bloated dead sea-lion that was washed up right at the path. luckily we noticed this poor creature at the beginning, and I can truly say I was never so glad to see a blob of blubber as I was that day. My heart was just pounding as adrenaline and survival instincts were on high alert.
The calming feather on rounded stones image was taken the same morning, up the road a bit after our little nature hike. The whole ordeal was magnified in my mind as it was happening, because we had read many signs warning about getting trapped in coves etc along the beach at high tide. Just another great memory around the peaceful waters.
With temperatures climbing past 60 degrees today, I started to reminisce about a couple of images from the Virginia Beach Neptune Festival a few years ago. Art comes in many forms and I am always amazed what these sand sculptors create with several million grains of sand. These are good examples of getting up before the rest of the world to get images others rarely see. Now I can only hope for a good arctic blast to set everything back on its proper course, and maybe get some snow sculptures instead.