The town of Rockport Massachusetts on Cape Ann, is one of those iconic New England locations that everyone can recognize. The pictures, paintings, and various other tourist memorabilia all serve to memorialize a view of ‘Motif #1′ at the harbor. The fishing shack located on Bradley Wharf in Rockport has been painted innumerable times since it was built in 1840′s. It’s now the center of a bustling tourist area that encompasses Main St and Bearskin Neck to provide a unique and, certainly in the summer, a crowded location to enjoy the North Shore. There are a variety of locations to shoot if you step away from the red fishing shack and keep your eyes open.
I’ve always liked looking for rough details, especially around a harbor, that help give a sense of the location without being too obvious. The T-Wharf in Rockport looks out over Bradley Wharf and it’s a working harbor area with a great many details of commercial fishing. The rusty anchors and rough lobster pots on the dock can provide some nice environmental images while giving the iconic building less emphasis in your compositions. The first image below I was trying to use my wide angle lens to distort the perspective from the rusty anchor, bringing it to the forefront of the image while still letting the viewer know where it’s located.
When standing on the end of T-Wharf, just turn around. You’ll see all the working fishing boats that are sitting just in front of you. And if you go in winter, it’s significantly quieter and easier to find parking. And cold shouldn’t bother a landscape photographer, anyway. Of course a 25 mph wind at your back coming off the ocean in the middle of February may make you question your decision to shoot that time of year.
There are many interesting areas around Rockport. One of my favorites is Halibut Point State Park. This former granite quarry provides some beautiful views up and down the coast. Because it’s a former quarry, the area is filled with granite boulders all along the coastline, making for some interesting images. The image below shows the coast with the boulders strewn everywhere. I felt that it worked well as a Black and White conversion.
Hopefully I have given you some food for thought, or at least a little break to look at some interesting pictures. You can find more of these type of images here on my website. Thanks for looking.