Smith Island Photography Workshop: June 15-17

  I had an awesome group of photographers from Annapolis, Kent Island and Northern Virginia on Smith Island for the fifth photography workshop of the year. We went out at odd hours of the day to take advantage of the best light for shooting wildlife, watermen at work and iconic landmarks around the island. As always, the kind and generous people of Smith Island were the highlight for the photography students. Looking forward to my next group coming out this week.

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Smith Island Workshop 6.15.2018© Jay Fleming11.jpg
Smith Island Workshop 6.15.2018© Jay Fleming14.jpg
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Baltimore Light

Last week, I had a great opportunity to check out Baltimore Light with Tom Weaver, Joe Evans from Chesapeake Bay Magazine and the owners of the lighthouse. The restoration of this historic lighthouse has taken a lot of hard-work and dedication!

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Baltimore Light © Jay Fleming04.jpg
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Smith Island Photography Workshop: June 8-10

We had a torrential downpour, lightning and all of the greened flies that anyone could handle - but we still had a great time! Thanks to the five participants of the fourth Smith Island photography workshop of 2018 for coming with the desire to learn and an open mind.

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 Taking advantage of the rainwater to get low and photograph reflections on the street in Ewell. 

Taking advantage of the rainwater to get low and photograph reflections on the street in Ewell. 

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 One of my favorite moments of the trip was when Janice Anderson stopped shooting to pick up trash, she wanted to leave the marsh "better than the way we found it"

One of my favorite moments of the trip was when Janice Anderson stopped shooting to pick up trash, she wanted to leave the marsh "better than the way we found it"

Smith Island Photography Workshop: June 1-3

The third Smith Island photography workshop 2018 started on Friday, June first. The group of five photographers from Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania arrived on a beautiful summer afternoon. Not wasting any time, we quickly got oriented and packed our gear to head out for the evening shoot on the northern end of the island. The weather forecast predicted rain and wind on both Saturday and Sunday, so we knew that this would be our best opportunity for clear skies at sunset. Following the shoot, I ran the boat back into Ewell where we had a traditional Smith Island meal - Crab Cakes, Potatoes, Asparagus, Corn Bread and Cake - waiting for us. 

On the morning of the second day, the wake up call was at 3:45am to get the crew well caffeinated and on the water about an hour before sunset. We photographed the island's watermen 'fishing-up' soft crabs at dawn with the shanties illuminated and the boats leaving for the crabbing ground. As sunrise approached, we headed out with the scrapers and photographed them working the shallow waters inside of the island. Clouds to the east made for a dramatic sky and the 'slick-cam' seas provided for amazing reflections in the water. With the morning progressing and the light becoming harsh, I pointed the bow back to Ewell where we had breakfast waiting. We headed back out in the late morning for the second half of the day. The afternoon was hot and humid with large thunder heads and storms popping up all around the island. The island was spared by the rain and we were treated to dramatic cumulus clouds in every direction. We met with a waterman who allowed us to shoot crab scraping from his boat, and were later treated to a crab feast at his shanty. Following lunch at the crab shanty, we headed to Tylerton for a Smith Island Cake making demonstration with the renowned chef Mary-Ada Marshall. I set up a portable studio in Mary-Ada's kitchen where she constructed the eight layer cake. 

On Sunday morning, we slept in until 6am and woke to cloudy skies and strong Northeast winds. We took advantage of the down time to process photographs that we took during the portions of the trip with more favorable weather for shooting on the water. Around 11am, we packed the gear onto the ferry and the crew prepared to cross Tangier Sound into a stiff wind on the ferry Miss Tyler. 

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Shooting from the bow of the boat at one of the islands Brown Pelican colonies. 

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A cake making demonstration/photo shoot on Saturday afternoon. 

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On Saturday, June 2nd, we photographed the crab scraping fleet at sunrise working near Ewell with beautiful morning light. In the early afternoon we met up with a waterman who graciously let us photograph him from onboard his boat while working near Tyler's Creek.

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(left to right) Carolyn, Marc, Barbi, Eric and Kim onboard the Miss Tyler before heading back to Crisfield on Sunday, June 3rd.