Judge’s Shack

Judge’s Shack

  • Judges Shack Island Beach State Park New Jersey

Andrew Wyeth and a New Jersey Shack

The Judge’s Shack is a beach shack and one of our state’s lesser icons. New Jersey is known for many things. but our beach shacks tend to get little attention. They were small vacation homes built in rural parts of the Jersey shore back when there were rural parts of the Jersey Shore. Their only real significance is that they were here before crowds of vacationers occupied almost every square inch of the New Jersey shoreline in the summertime. Most of the shacks are gone, falling victim to time, hurricanes and development.

The Judge’s Shack, shown here was built in 1911. It gets its name from Judge Richard Hartshorne who bought it as a vacation home in the 1940s. It is now unoccupied and part of New Jersey’s Island Beach State Park.

Andrew Wyeth

While both photographing and processing these images, I kept going back to one of my major influences, artist Andrew Wyeth. The things I really love about Wyeth’s work are his color palette and his portrayal homes and buildings. These images are in no way meant to be Wyeth like in style, but more in spirit.

Judges Shack Island Beach State Park New Jersey

Judge’s Shack by Richard Lewis 2017


Judges Shack

Brooding Quiet by Richard Lewis 2017


Judges Shack Island Beach State Park New Jersey

Stormy Day At Judge’s Shack by Richard Lewis 2017

The Current State Of New Jersey’s Beach Shacks

Dennisville Shack New Jersey Delaware Bay

Dennisville Shack by Richard Lewis 2017

While the Judge’s Shack is fortunate enough to be in a State Park, most of our New Jersey beach shacks have been knocked down by a bull dozer or a storm. Here is one that is barely standing along the Delaware Bay in Southern New Jersey.








2018-01-11T10:12:34+00:00 July 6th, 2017|14 Comments


  1. Jon July 6, 2017 at 10:59 am - Reply

    Outstanding as always. Your photography is truly a joy

    • Rich Lewis July 8, 2017 at 11:00 am - Reply

      Thanks Jon. I’m glad you are enjoying these images and appreciate you taking the time to comment here.

  2. Laura (PA Pict) July 6, 2017 at 11:59 pm - Reply

    I saw the connection to Wyeth – and specifically to Christina’s World – immediately so you definitely achieved your goal. It’s a wonderfully composed photograph.

    • Rich Lewis July 8, 2017 at 10:52 am - Reply

      Thanks Laura. Christina’s World was the first Wyeth painting I saw as a kid and it is still one of my favorites.

  3. larryalyons July 7, 2017 at 10:19 am - Reply

    Definitely has the Wyeth spirit… Very enjoyable images.

    • Rich Lewis July 8, 2017 at 10:59 am - Reply

      Thanks Larry. I appreciate your comment and am glad you enjoyed these photographs.

  4. MikeP July 8, 2017 at 10:51 am - Reply

    Beautiful piece Rich…. love Wyeth… your pics show your own spin, which I really like but still have a nod to the painter. I wish painters would open up more about photography as photographers have embraced the painting medium!!! I as you have always kept an open mind for ALL types of art… I think this has helped our craft grow. Keep it up brother!!!!!

    • Rich Lewis July 8, 2017 at 10:58 am - Reply

      Thank Mike for the compliment. It means a lot coming from you. I have to agree with you about painters. There is a landscape painter named Peter Fiore who photographs the places he wants to paint and actually processes his images and and works from the finished files. Of course he adds things the camera would never be able to see, but that’s painting for you.

  5. Ralph Berglund July 10, 2017 at 11:03 am - Reply

    Nice work, Rich. You do cover ground. I particularly like the Judge’s Shack with the dune fencing in the foreground.

    • Rich Lewis July 10, 2017 at 12:04 pm - Reply

      Thanks Ralph. That fence makes the nicest leading line to compose with.

  6. Craig McCord Photography July 13, 2017 at 9:03 am - Reply

    Well done Rich. Looks like a fantastic area to photograph, and you’ve done it justice.

    • Rich Lewis July 13, 2017 at 9:57 am - Reply

      Thanks Craig. It is a nice area and the only open area of the New Jersey shoreline any more.

  7. denisebushphoto July 18, 2017 at 10:07 am - Reply

    A wonderful subject and images. I especially like the first vertical with the horizontal fence. I can’t help but think the addition of Christy in a beach chair is the only thing missing.

    • Rich Lewis July 18, 2017 at 6:11 pm - Reply

      Thanks Denise. You picked one of my favorite image. Not just of this set but something I’m glad to put in my top 100. That Christy thing, unfortunately, happened right around the time this post went live. Great timing. His “shack” isn’t far from this one.

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