It’s not surprising to find Shaun Fenn hanging around down by the water, but his latest personal project, Crew, shot at the Newport Aquatic Center, hits particularly close to home.
“My brother rowed in college, and he and the coach were on the same team, so we’re all old friends. Now my brother’s son is rowing on the [NAC] team. Newport Beach is home for me; it’s where I grew up. It feels so comfortable being around the water so it was a really natural fit,” said Shaun.
Shaun shot an extensive collection of photos—hanging around the dock, on the water, and in the locker room. The goal was to capture imagery that would tell a story of about the challenges and camaraderie of the team, and what it means to be a member.
“The kids were having such a good time. They’re all hams; they love to get their picture taken. They feel like rock stars. Of course, the more time I spent taking their picture the less time they were out on the water getting their butt kicked by the coach,” he laughed.
The images, presented in black and white, a throwback to Shaun’s days shooting with Kodak Tri-X film, are included in his most recent mailer.
“I love the whole vintage feel, it really speaks to how long this sport’s been around—its European roots. It’s changed a lot; it’s no longer a handful of guys in a cotton t-shirt out on a wood boat. Now it’s all steel and fiberglass and timing devices. It’s pretty hard core,” Shaun observed.
The second goal of the project was to take his trademark aesthetic and approach and apply them to different scenarios and treatments, be it sport or business, color or black and white.
“As a commercial photographer, I’m always trying to find ways to look outside the box and expand my repertoire, ” Shaun added.