Hokkaido Boat Abstracts

In Hokkaido, Postcards From..., Travel, Vision Is Better by David14 Comments

duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-6 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-5 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-4duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-1Halfway through this last trip to Hokkaido my brain needed a break from all the white, elegant, graphic stuff. Beautiful, to be sure, but I needed something tangental, something different. In part, I think, I wanted something manmade, probably longed for some colour as well. What I found in the old boat yards, the boats all up on blocks, some for just the winter, some – one sensed – for the rest of their lives, was exactly what I needed. Layers of paint, and fiberglass patches, combined with years of salt water, and the push of waves to create some amazing patterns, colourful accidental, wabi-sabi. Some of the images are just tightly framed, literal photographs, some are double exposures (made in-camera with my Fuji XT-1), and some include camera motion. All of them, I think, made by a collaboration between the fishermen who own and maintain these boats, the water and weather in which they ply their trade, and my own craft. Some try to conjure up the waves and rhythms of the sea, some are just a recognition of beauty in the colours and patterns.

Click the top image and it’ll get larger and you can scroll through them from there. duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-3 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-9 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-8 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-7 duChemin-Hokkaido-abstract-10


  1. Pingback: Hokkaido Boat Abstracts – news.iNthacity

  2. Pingback: Kim Manley Ort | Topics | Photo Project

  3. Love the abstract work David. Again you’ve masterfully blurred the lines between a photographer’s eye (and camera) with a painter’s style (and brush).

  4. Won’t surprise you to know I admire this work. This time I am drawn more to the more still images, with all the fine detail in the texture and weathering. Reminds me I have a coffee table (outdoor setting) made from reclaimed fishing boat timber – I guess that’s my weekend photographic assignment right there.

    1. Author

      Thanks, Rosemary. I’m glad you made it past the spam robot this time 🙂

  5. Really cool, love the way some of them mimic the sea, and other natural elements. I’ve always maintained the mother nature was the first abstract artist. If one only looks, one can find abstracts everywhere in nature. I know you had your own influence on many of the images, but hey, you’re part of nature too!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.