Jeffrey Bale’s World of Gardens: Portraits of Fishing Nets

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A creature emerges from the patterns shaped by a pile of coloured fishing nets in Naoussa on the Island of Paros in Greece
Floats maintain the nets aloft within the water
A cascade of gold filigree in Naoussa, on the Island of Paros

Throughout my travels by way of the Greek Isles within the winter of 2013 and 14 I used to be struck by the great thing about the fishing nets I noticed piled on the waterfronts of villages.

Nets on the waterfront in Panormos on the Island of Tinos

I started to experiment with photographing the nets in ways in which captured the strains and patterns and blends of shade that they conveyed.  The colours would change relying on the sunshine and the time of day.

A painted stool for sitting whereas repairing nets


Nets piled on the waterfront in Panormos on the Island of Tinos
Shades of blue and turquoise in Tinos City on the Island of Tinos

One of many issues that struck me concerning the nets have been the number of colours.  When mixed, the delicacy of the patterns they shaped and the best way that they intermixed, together with the contrasting types of the web floats made for fantastic compositions.

Gold blends with orange in nets on the waterfront of Heraklion, Crete


Floats organized like necklaces on the waterfront of Naoussa on the Island of Paros

I grew to become obsessive about capturing photographs of those lovely tangles of shade and line, generally seeing figures and faces inside them.

Turquoise and Yellow Nets in Tinos City on the Island of Tinos in Greece
Pale blue traceries on the waterfront of Tinos City

The array of hues is numerous and fantastic, wealthy reds, maroon, cream, pale blues, turquoise, and mostly shades of yellow.

Purple and Maroon nets in Naoussa, Paros
Purple floats spangle a pile of cream coloured nets
Golden nets unfold on a floral carpet on a ship in Heraklion, Crete


Nets piled alongside the harbor in Heraklion, on the Island of Crete
Mounds of nets in Heraklion, Crete
A younger man mends a internet in Parikia, Paros

I’ll proceed to doc nets so as to add to my assortment sooner or later.  Two of the pictures listed below are from the waterfront in Genoa, Italy, which I visited this winter in 2015.  I am hoping to submit a set of pictures to the Blue Sky Pictures Gallery right here in Portland, Oregon within the close to future.

A wealthy mix of rust coloured nets on the waterfront in Genoa, Italy

The bounty is nothing prefer it as soon as was as overfishing has plundered the Adriatic Sea, the custom of fishing carries on, extra out of custom than success lately.

Getting ready nets in Vathy on the Island of Samos

I additionally prefer to the catch displayed in fish markets.  Massive fish are more and more uncommon, and the alternatives arrayed on the market on crushed ice within the Mediterannean are a fraction of what they have been a decade in the past.  Smaller fish are rather more frequent however even these are dwindling in provide.  Nets aren’t discriminating with regards to rounding up the quarry of the ocean.  Little is thrown again alive that is not wished, which the trade calls “Bycatch”.  The small fishing boats I am photographing have a fraction of the impression that giant business trawlers do.  Giant manufacturing unit trawlers can rake the seas clear and course of large portions of fish with out having to return to port, making it doable to take advantage of areas that used to assist maintain fish populations.  It’s estimated that for each ton of prawns caught, three tons of undesirable fish are killed and discarded.  Take into consideration that subsequent time you order prawns.

Sword fish are more and more uncommon in fish markets, Genoa, Italy

Sustainable fishing appears unimaginable with the intention to meet the demand, since seafood is such a standard staple within the tradition of the Mediterranean area.  The ever rising marketplace for sushi is inflicting the collapse of tuna populations, 5 out of eight species at the moment being threatened with extinction.  Air pollution makes consuming massive fish an rising well being menace, with noticable ranges of mercury and heavy metals discovered concentrated in them, being greater on the meals chain.

Small Octopii within the Quadrilatero of Bologna, Italy

The Meals Assist Group of the United Nations estimates that 25% of what’s caught is discarded and that greater than 70% of the world’s fisheries are totally or over exploited.

Prawns and Needlefish within the Quadrilato Market in Bologna

Finest to stay to sardines, though plastic waste is so prevalent in our oceans at this time that the smallest minnows in probably the most distant seas have been discovered to include the residual of our discards.  We have finished nice hurt to our oceans and the results are being felt in our lifetime.

Anchovies within the fish market in Genoa, Italy

Even the nets develop into a curse to the ocean lengthy after their helpful life is full, tangling on the seafloor and shorelines.

A white internet tangled on pink lava rock on the Island of Santorini


A fisherman mends his nets on a ship within the harbor of Parikia on the Island of Paros

So we’re seeing an finish to a as soon as nice period of fisheries that has spanned the centuries of human historical past.  However there’s nonetheless nice magnificence to be captured right here.  The nets are lovely after they aren’t getting used.

The traditional harbor in Heraklion, Crete, the place the custom of fishing has been practiced for maybe three,000 years

Thanks for studying, Jeffrey

A tableau in a fishing shack on the Island of Santorini
Nets in Parikia on the Island of Paros
Heraklion, Crete
Naoussa, Paros
Hora on the Island of Naxos


Pink and Cream nets in Tinos City

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