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Author, Photographer, Seafarer


– Ibn Battuta

Born a Philadelphian, I was raised by exceptionally loving, supporting and nurturing and  parents. I am fond of my childhood. The discovery of me playing the piano by ear at age four drove Mom and Dad to explore this spectacle. Music lessons and art classes supplemented my academic curricula and by age ten I was playing Bach and Beethoven on the organ and designing houses in art class. An interesting mix, classical music and architecture. We traveled extensively as a family. First domestically, then Asia, South America, and our first cruise in 1967 on Holland America Lines “SS Rotterdam V” to the West Indies. This cruise unleashed an obsession, an infectious attraction to ships and the sea.


I witnessed the birth of an entire industry and participated in its evolution as the owner of two travel agencies in Philadelphia in the late seventies. Thanks to an inspiring, entrepreneurial, and overly optimistic father who saw me running a business in my late teens, the travel part was the asset.

Running a business at the time was not for this fledgling artist. Twenty-years later, a more savvy and experienced professional, I moved to Miami in 2000, to pursue client projects in the hospitality and cruise industry including a start-up cruise line and publishing venture. Living in the center of the cruise-capital of the world, I racked up over one-hundred cruises on several brands.A life-changing event in 2015 lured me to pursue a childhood dream of mine, a transatlantic ocean crossing on an ocean liner. These events drove me to a new-found path of creativity re-energizing my senses. I bought a camera and the rest is history.


I share photographer David Geffin’s opinion regarding black and white photography: “Black and white allows you to begin to think about key elements (lighting, and composition,) that you might otherwise not focus on as much when you’re thinking about making colors work together.”

My motto: Never say "I should have" again.

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Immerse yourself in this
captivating & illuminating odyssey.

Photographs are the story I fail to put into words

— Destin Sparks 

From the Archives


A 2019 success story:


Schwartz's tribute to Holland America Lines "Prinsendam - Elegant Explorer" was shipped to over sixteen countries around the world in 2019 including the entire ship's company and guests for her final voyage to Norway and the Arctic in May 2019. The Norway book features many photos from this epic voyage, a fond farewell to "Prinsendam".


Softbound copies of the gift edition are available at $28 including

free shipping in the USA with international shipping available.

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