A Photo In The Life Of

A Photo In the Life Of is a weekly photo blog written by Larry Lewis. Topics include photo opportunities, past and present, product reviews and other topics of interest to photographers and photo lovers.

A Day At The Vintage Boat Show

Roger and Little Suzie at Fleafest 2015

July 11 I had the opportunity to shoot Fleafest at the 35th Annual ACBS Toronto Vintage Boat Show at the Muskoka Warf in Gravenhurst, Ontario. 

A few weeks ago my friend and neighbor, Roger Duncan, invited me to tag along with him to the Toronto Vintage Boat Show in Gravenhurst. Roger is a Seaflea boat enthusiast and was displaying his hand made Seaflea named Little Suzie at the show. I jumped at the opportunity. I've never had much experience shooting boats and have never shot a boat show. I saw it as a great opportunity to get in a day of shooting and to maybe learn something about shooting on the water. When I told Roger of my intention to bring my equipment he thought it was a great idea as well.  


A Seaflea is a home built boat design that became popular in the ‘70’s. While these boats may be fairly sophisticated, they are extremely lightweight and portable and can be relatively simple and economical to build. They are essentially a wedge with a motor and can be very fast! 


Non-boaters probably don't know what a Seaflea boat is. Before this weekend I have never seen a Seaflea in action, although I had many good looks at Roger's version in his garage over the years. Once I saw the boats on the water I immediately saw their appeal. As an outsider watching from the dock they appear to be similar to one of the old time roller coasters. You know, the ones that toss and twist you around. Exhilarating, fun and a little scary! Small and light enough for one person to load and launch, they are the Sea-Doo before there was a Sea-Doo.  

If you are interested in these great boats visit Chris Taylor's site, muskokaseaflea.ca.  Chris' site has news, forums, photos, videos from the Seaflea community and even plans to make your own Seaflea!

I had a great day of shooting. The boat owners and enthusiasts were extremely friendly and eager to 'talk boats and motors.' I had very little to contribute to the conversations but enjoyed myself immensely. At the end of the day I had over 700 images! Now comes the process of going through the images to see what I did well and what images did not relay the message that I intended. In the weeks and months ahead I will review the images and look at others boating images to see how I can improve for the next time I get an opportunity to shoot boats and boaters. One accessory that I did not have with me is my ND filter. Next time I will bring it along for some interesting motion blur shots. 

All images were shot with my 17-40mm f4 L and 70-200mm f4 L lenses with a polarizer filter to reduce the glare of the sun and water and to increase contrast. I viewed and shot the exhibits with one lens, then went through the process again with the other lens. In a way I would have liked to have had an all-in-one 18-200mm lens for laziness sake, but there is an advantage to having limited focal lengths. With limited focal lengths at your disposal it forces you to be creative with some of the angles and composition of your shots, hopefully making for interesting images. Shooting action shots made me wish for a fast telephoto lens. Maybe some day! I did not use a tripod due to the limited space and crowds on the warf.

Next week I'll feature select images from the rest of the Toronto Vintage Boat. Enjoy the Seaflea images.   

A Photo In The Life Of is a weekly PHOTO blog on LARRYLEWISPHOTO.COM.   It is an evolution of my original blog A Photo in the life of  that began in 2006.  I hope to give a little context to my photography and maybe make a few new photography friends. To purchase a print visit Shop. If the image is not listed Contact Me for availability.

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