Stearns Wharf was one of the many tourist destinations I visited while spending time in southern California. I took the trip from Ventura with my brother who now resides there. The day trip to Santa Barbara was one I had taken before, and one that I looked forward to. On this particular venture, I was still acclimating from living, predominately in Thailand, for 3.5 years straight. I flew directly from Bangkok to Los Angeles and despite it being early summertime, I was freezing. This photo series, among others I had taken during my time in California, was shot while my brain was still adjusting to North American life. I was hit hard with culture shock and revisiting some of the photos in the series, I can sense it. I shot what seemed distant to me in addition to what felt balanced and serene.
While taking these shots, I felt hyper objective. Disconnected, as one may feel in a dream where one is watching a scene play out but not able to fully engage. An almost ghostlike state.
Context: Stearns Wharf is a pier in the Santa Barbara harbor. Built by John P. Stearns in 1872, the wharf accommodated the freight shipping and passenger needs of the community for over a quarter century. Presently, Stearns Wharf serves the community as a local landmark and community space. A restaurant, The Harbor Restaurant has attracted locals and tourists alike since 1941.
Stearns Wharf Address:
219 Stearns Wharf
Santa Barbara, CA 93109
Tel: 805 564 5530