I've been coming to the Vineyard since the 1950's and playing golf ardently (though somewhat pathetically) since childhood. Now, as I hobble into the millennium, I still recall when what is now the Farm Neck back nine, was part of the old Island Country Club on Beach Road. I started taking photographs in the early 1960's in New York, lived in Boston during the 70's documenting the counter culture, traveled extensively throughout the tropics in the 80's, and landed on the Vineyard permanently in the 90's. My photography has gradually shifted from photojournalism and cultural commentary to pastoral landscapes and the celebration of nature.
Of the many golf courses I've played—from Bermuda to Hawaii, from Maine to California—nothing compares to Farm Neck. The pungent smell of fresh cut grass; the dew on the early spring shoots of Clematis; the sun warmed texture of Vineyard sand (even in the traps!); the light glistening across the foggy pond; the pinkish blue of a motionless Vineyard sunrise and the misty eloquence of a day's end, replete with a cricketed soundtrack combine to form the perfect backdrop to a Farm Neck 18. The good shots and the poor shots, the precious moments of exultation followed by episodes of frustration and humility, memorable conversations and hearty laughs amidst the good-natured needling that comprise life as usual at Farm Neck. Throughout the past year, I have tried to capture the symbiosis of nature and golf that have conspired to create Farm Neck.
Peter Simon has been a summer visitor to the Island since 1955 and has lived here year 'round since 1987. He publishes the annual "Vineyard Calendar", and his most recent book is the photo/autobiography, "I and eye~Pictures of My Generation", published by Little Brown.