Wednesday, November 5, 2008

men of the sea

The images above are all potential environmental portraits for the next Bay Area Photo Club honors night meeting. The top two are of Captain Kip Files, who sailed the tall ship Elissa out into the Gulf of Mexico during her sea trials in the spring. The first shot is probably less of an environmental portrait than any I'm considering submitting next week, but there's something about it that's really appealing to me - a sailor piloting the ship back to dock after a day at sea silhouetted against the late-day sun. No, it's not your typical portrait ... but it sure was quite a scene as I stood below him with my wide angle lens. The second shot of Captain Files was taken at the back of the boat midway through the sail. As I took photos of him smoking, he joked that his wife better not see these. Sorry, Captain, seven months is as long as I can wait. The bottom photo was taken last weekend in Galveston as a shrimp boat docked. This shrimper who was securing the line, I learned, was a king crab fisherman from Alaska and was visiting the boat owner to help shrimp and work on his damaged house after Ike. So, here are two men of the sea, stopping in Galveston on their journeys - on as disparate a mission as you can imagine.


  1. Hi Steve!

    These three are all terrific. I like the first and last one the most. On the second one I wish the smoke would have cleared from in front of your subject's face (hopefully you get some other opinions on this). The first one is absolutely stunning! It should definitely earn you a Gold award on merits of the photo but it might give a judge pause on applicability to the Environmental Portrait assignment. What's the main subject of the photo, the man or the ship? Whatever you decide on the applicability issue, the photo is great! I really like the last one as well and think it would be a strong contender for top Environmental Portait!

  2. Funny, I LIKE the smoke in the middle image...I think it is my favorite! I love the rugged, weathered look of it. And I really like the last one too. I wonder if the judges want to see the person's eyes, if sunglasses detract from the portrait aspect a little...I don't think so, but wonder if THEY will. All the other aspects are there, and the rope and the nets and the box or trap or whatever that is on the boat really add to the feel of the shot. The first image is very nice graphically but I agree with Barry that it isn't really an environmental portrait as you cannot see the person at all.