Monday, April 28, 2008

Fisherman's heaven

Several fisherman were trying their luck on the Chattahoochee River just below the Eagle & Phenix Mill Falls Sunday morning. Along with several boats near the falls, both shores were dotted with fisherman taking advantage of the plentiful shad run to catch whatever would bite. A fishing event itself could be had watching all ages scooping up these silvery bait fish with nets, cups and even their hands to take home and freeze for tomorrow what they didn't fish with that day.

Lonzell Carter had decided to take his nephew, Kieren Whittlesey, 12, with him to catch a little catfish for dinner. I shot this photo after he caught his second of four he hoped to catch Sunday. Neither Carter nor his nephew were shy about wading into the water and getting their shoes or jeans wet to get to where the fish were biting. The third of the four catfish Carter had hoped to catch before he planned to call it a day. He caught his fourth a few short minutes later. "This is the funnest thing in the world," he told me.
Kieren Whittlesey was kind enough to take a moment from casting to allow me to make this portrait. He wasn't having as much luck as his uncle, but he never complained about it and kept hard at it the whole morning.
Whittlesey's natural work table that he used to cut up the shad and bait his hook with. I am always looking for still lifes that say something about a person without them in the frame obviously. There's just something about a boy not hesitating when it comes to cutting off the head of a fish that says something about what he can do in life.

Calvin Peters had decided to grab a net and take his son, Kevin, and his grandson, Casey, out to the middle of the river to scoop up as many shad as possible to take home and freeze for future fishing trips. In the second photo you can see the three Peters generation's hard work with this 5 gallon bucket almost full to the top, yet Casey, 12, and his grandfather, Calvin, continue to net more shad. I could hardly get them to stop long enough to get their name, but who could blame them.

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