The halls of Bluenose II’s office are lined with photos that tell the ship’s story.
There are the legendary launch photos by Nova Scotia photographer Wallace R. MacAskill, a shot of the ever-serious Capt. Angus Walters and countless images of crews gone-by.
And now, Lunenburg photographer Peter Zwicker has become part of that story.
Zwicker, who works under his company Bacalao Photo, recently had one of his photos of the Bluenose II hung in the office, tying him to the historic ship.
“It’s nice to see your work appreciated by other people,” he said, noting that he recently completed a photography project for Bluenose II. “It’s very rewarding.”
Although he has work in National Geographic, Saltscapes and other publications, Zwicker’s photography journey began rather recently.
Zwicker said he began, like most people, taking photos of family and friends roughly 10 years ago.
“When I retired, I had a lot more time on my hands and I started working on it more actively.”
And over the course of the last few years, Zwicker believes his work has become more polished. His favourite subjects, like his company name, are steeped in Maritime tradition.
“I love the waterfront,” he explained. “Our family was in the saltfish business and sold salt cod.”
The Portuguese term for cod is ‘bacalhau,’ which has been honoured in Zwicker’s company name, Bacalao Photo.
Given that he’s from Lunenburg, Bluenose II was an obvious subject.
Zwicker noted that he tried his hand at portraiture and also does some commercial and estate photography, but he can’t help but return to the ocean.
“Boats don’t argue with you,” he said with a smile.
The photographer relishes in being able to share his photos with Nova Scotians who have moved away.
“Through social media, putting up pictures of Lunenburg or even Nova Scotia, you bring a lot of joy to people who are no longer in the area.”
The importance of photography and documenting place through a lens is not lost on Zwicker. He said that being able to capture his home and to learn his chosen craft has been a labour of love.
“Sometimes, even when you take the picture, you still have to develop it,” said Zwicker, explaining that the editing process is akin to darkrooms in a way. “There are very few perfect images that come out of a camera.”