Ghosts of Mare Island


Ghosts, photo by Harold Davis. View this image larger.

Mare Island, a peninsula across the Napa River from Vallejo, California, was the site of the first naval shipyard on the Pacific coast. As many as 40,000 people worked here during the 1940s.

All the bustle is gone, leaving toxic waste dumps, decaying industrial structures and dry docks. One part of Mare Island is a planned real estate development, surrounding an elementary school, with some homes already “bank owned.”

The Mare Island Naval Shipyard hosts a small museum. But mostly it seems the haunt of ghosts. A sad and untidy industrial waste land, but great to photograph.

A couple of weeks ago I spoke at the Marin Photography Club about night photography techniques. (Here’s my story about after that meeting.) The presentation was to help prepare the group for an afternoon-to-night photo shoot on Mare Island. Merrill Mack of the Photo Club was kind enough to invite me to join the group on Mare Island. The company was enthusiastic about photography, and Mark and I had a great time exploring and photographing. I’m sure I’ll be back.

Mare Island Moonrise

View this image larger.

[Both: Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR zoom lens, tripod mounted. Top: 22mm (33mm in 35mm terms), 30 seconds at f/5.6 and ISO 100; Above (Moon rise): 200mm (300mm in 35mm terms), 4 seconds at f/5.6 and ISO 100.]

This entry was posted in Digital Night, Photography.

3 Trackbacks

  1. […] two and a half minutes, this is my longest exposure from the abandoned naval base on Mare Island. Shorter than my usual night exposures, but then this is very different subject matter than star […]

  2. […] is another photo of the abandoned naval shipyards on Mare Island. I like the conjunction of tracks and lines (the railroad, the airplane trail in the sky) and […]

  3. By Mare Island Night Photo Shoot | Photoblog 2.0 on August 9, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    […] More Mare Island. […]

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