I just found this today and I think it’s awesome. Corey Arnold is a photographer who has recently done a lot of work shooting commercial fishermen in European waters, and he’s keeping this blog up on the San Francisco art site Fecal Face. Yeah the site sounds a little sophomoric and if you’re a “high-art” kind of asshole then maybe you’ll be turned off, but the site focuses on real people doing real things, much in the same way the announcer for “Fishing With John” would ironically say “These are real men, doing real things,” except that this is not ironic. For one, Corey Arnold is an amazing photographer, but he also gets into the daily trials and difficulties of being a commercial fisherman in this day and age.
One of the most poignant things he writes in this entry is this: “Life as a fisherman is far more complex in Europe then [sic] what I’m used to in Alaska. There are too many countries sharing common fishing grounds… all with complex quota systems managed by the European Union. It’s basically a giant mess. While many of the fishermen I met are dedicated to sustainable fishing practices that support an abundance of fish, they are subjected to quotas on individual species of fish that just happen to swim among other species of sought after fish. Therefore, its hard to target one species without accidentally filling your net with an illegal or undersized species from time to time. Those fish, the bycatch, are not allowed to be retained and therefore go back over the side, usually dead. This is one of the many problems that the industry faces today. Fisherman tend to get the blame for overfishing worldwide, but it more often the problem lies in a lack of management creativity. “
It’s worth following, what he’s doing right now. Check it out here.