Personal work - Salerno, Italy - an old boat
Personal work - Salerno, Italy - an old boat

Steve Thornton Photography

About "Karama" & the video

This personal project was shot on two different days. I hopped onto a bus in Maiori, Italy, on the Amalfi Coast, to meet my business partner in Salerno, Italy. Just inside the city limits of Salerno, I briefly saw this old boat out of the bus window. I got off the bus, picked up the rental car, went to some meetings and on the way back to the hotel, in Maiori, drove into the port, by now it was very late in the day, about 8:00 p.m. (20:00). In driving to the boat there was a gate and it looked like it was locked. I got out of the car and saw the lock was closed, but the chain was not locked. So I unwrapped the chain & lock then opened the gate. I then was able to drive close to the boat. I jumped out of the car, & furiously shot 100+ images in 9 minutes, then the light was gone. I closed the gate, re-wrapped the chain and drove back to Maiori. 2 days later I drove back to Salerno in the morning & shot 300+ images in about 25 minutes.

The string you see hanging down in some of the photos is caulking. Traditional caulking (also spelled calking) on wooden vessels used fibers of cotton, and oakum (hemp fiber soaked in pine tar). These fibers are driven into the wedge shaped seam between planks with a caulking mallet and a broad chisel-like tool called a caulking iron. The caulking was then covered over with a putty in the case of hull seams, seen here, or in deck seams with melted pine pitch in a process referred to as paying.

Scroll down to look at satellite photos of the site. The 4 satellite maps below show where to boat was and the new construction.

Steve Thornton Photography

After I Googled about the boat, I found this article:

https://www.altomareblu.com/ricostruzione-yacht-karama-achille-lauro/

The KARAMA was the wooden yacht of the commander Achille Lauro, owner of the homonymous fleet, and although for many years now in melancholy disarmament in Salerno, translates into the unaltered elegance of its water lines the reason for the privilege of having been the boat of a man of sea and ships. It often happens: the boats that were of great shipowners preserve over time a particular charm.

The history of KARAMA, in addition to interweaving with that of Lauro, also boasts the striking primacy of the Inscription at the port authority of Naples with the initials and number NA001ND: the first pleasure craft registered in Naples.

The KARAMA is 31 meters long outside (102 feet), wide outside 6.50 meters (21½ feet); it has 3.26 meters (12 feet) of construction height and gross tonnage of 103.31 tons; powered by a 1962 Rolls Royce 327 hp eight-cylinder engine, it was enabled to sail over twenty miles offshore.

The recovery of KARAMA through a substantial reconstruction of the unit is a desirable process that, if it were started, would have important positive effects including:

Bring back to navigate and participate in the special regattas a historic and important boat, owned in the past by a famous shipowner as well as the first pleasure craft registered at the port authority of Naples;

Propose the boat, destined for its plaque to be first, for another record: saved from an inadequate demolition thanks to human farsightedness, it could return to sailing with the European flag that is the flag of peace; KARAMA could return to sail the Mediterranean, in which many battles have been consummated and so many lives have been broken, like the first "peace ship" (and not "war"!) with the European flag, a ship destined for conferences and traveling events of cultural and social interest;

To favor a virtuous process of recovery of the traditions of wooden boats and of the relative constructive knowledge, more and more often now entrusted to old shipwrights and shipbuilders; in this way it is possible to promote the relaunch of a sector that has ancient roots on the coast of Campania and to re-present a tradition that from the Maritime Republic of Amalfi to the excellence of the gozzo sorrentino has never abandoned the love for the sea and shipbuilding naval; the renovation of an ancient and famous wooden boat produces work and renews the love never worn by the wooden boat for lovers, but the art of building wooden boats is not improvised, handed down; in other words, a historical reconstruction allows both to pass on to young people who approach shipbuilding knowledge handed down from many generations who are now in danger of getting lost, and to encourage and motivate potential buyers of wooden boats, new or to be restored, to our shipbuilding industry; finally, there is the positive impact, in terms of environmental impact, in all phases of the life of a boat, of the use of wood compared to fiberglass.
provide, through visits to the building site during the renovation and subsequent visits on board, an opportunity to finance the recovery work and the subsequent management of the unit.

As we can see, there are many positive aspects connected with the recovery of KARAMA; although not all the proposed objectives are easy to implement and the economic investment is obviously relevant, it is desirable that the work can be undertaken.

Attilio TolomeoSteve Thornton Photography

For Photographers

The Gear:
Canon 5D III camera bodies using 160 ISO using a
Canon lenses: 14mm, 16-35mm, 24-70mm lenses, an 85mm, a 50mm and a 200mm lens mounted onto a
Gitzo carbon fiber tripod with a
PhotoClam ball head.

Steve Thornton Photography

If you would like to use this image, or any of my images for mock or comp use, please just ask. There is never a charge for this service. Educational use is permitted without charge, unless published, but please ask first. All commercial use is available only with a limited copyright release prior to use from the copyright holder, Steve Thornton. Thanks for looking!

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