Beach Haven: A Photographic Investigation of Long Beach Island
We often refer back to the places that we are familiar with when encountering change, these places can be familiar over decades and generations. Along the coast of New Jersey, between Toms River and Atlantic City, there is a sliver of land that stretches 18 miles north to south but is barely half a mile wide. This place called Long Beach Island on a map but referred to as LBI by those who know it, is where I grew up, spent my summers and learned to surf. LBI is also where my father grew up and spent his summers, and where his father grew up and spent his summers. For my Senior Independent Study, I conducted a photographic investigation into the locations where I, and the generations before me, spent time. I have photographed what those locations look like at present. Though I have shot the images with a Hasslebald camera from the 1950s my images convey the contemporary look of Long Beach Island. I captured the modern disposition of the island, however the monochromatic images will reinforce the nostalgic quality of my relationship to the island and explain how I want the viewer to feel. This camera format and the choice of black and white film enabled me to create work that possesses an older look, instead of a modern image. To reiterate, my Senior Independent Study is intended to create a body of photographic work, representing the present day condition of Long Beach Island with a medium format camera from the mid-20th century to help facilitate a nostalgic expression. In that nostalgic feeling I have exploited my relationship and my families’ bond to the island that has been built and reinforced over the decades.
Theresa Spadola '17
Advisor: Bridget Milligan
All images copyright © 2017 Theresa. All rights reserved.