What Was Then

Old Mayport isn’t what it used to be.

A lot of the shrimp boats are still there, to be sure. But many of the docks – decrepit as they might have been – are long gone. Replaced by … nothing. The plan was for riverfront condos, but when the economy and the housing market tanked circa 2007 they never materialized.

They still haven’t.

The boats and the docks seem cut from the same cloth; tired but serviceable. Just be careful where you step.

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If you look close enough the boats had stories themselves, perhaps changing with the personal fortunes of their owners.

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I’m speculating of course. But true or not, there are stories sure to be found within their gunnels.

Preserving slices of time like this seems dangerously close to photographic cliche.  The death of the moment is eerily apropos. And yet photography is joined at the hip to memories of what was. So it is here.

There was no doubt beauty amongst the hardscrabble fishing village: the elegance of the egrets standing proud is but one example.

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And while Mayport Fishing Village itself hangs somewhat in limbo, the sunsets are still spectacular as you viewed westward from the banks of the St. Johns. The ocean is right around the corner, through the “Big Jetties.” And the boats are still there – at least some of them – plying their trade just as they always have.

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These prints and more are available as signed, custom prints. Please email me if interested.

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