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Dried grass with green fringe

Dried grass seed heads glow in the warming evening light of early spring.

Tall dried grass

I’m trying to print a wide range of photos as I start up on my Daily Print project to give myself a feel for what kinds of prints I’m fairly good at making already, and which areas I could use more practice.

I’m also trying to use a range of tools and techniques that I haven’t used before, to try to add them to my regular workflow to be used as required. This image showed just a hint of “green fringing” chromatic abberation, so I tried out Lightroom 4.1’s new “Defringe” controls. I don’t know if the slight fringing would have been noticeable in a print originally, but it sure wasn’t after a little bit of extra tweaking. Cool.

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

Photography show at ‘The Works’ 2011 festival

A forest of transmission towers and poles holding up a tangle of high voltage power lines near the Strathcona Refineries in Edmonton, Alberta are shrouded by the dense smoke from forest fires in BC in the late summer of 2010.

Strathcona Refineries #307, August 2010

I am very excited to let you all know that I will have a solo show of my photography at this year’s The Works Art & Design Festival here in Edmonton. If you’re not from Edmonton, The Works is a large festival that runs for a couple of weeks in the summer, with artists from all over the world displaying their work in various downtown venues. My show will be displayed at City Hall from the start of the festival on June 23 through to July 5 and there will be a reception for my show from 2-3pm on Saturday the 2nd of July.

As for the work itself, it is much different in content than my usual landscape and nature photography, but I think that my personal photographic style still shows through quite a bit. The exhibition will be twenty large prints of images I made last August when smoke from large forest fires in BC shrouded the refineries just east of Edmonton (and everything else in central Alberta) in a dense, orange haze. I wrote an entry about it at the time (click here), but haven’t shared any of these images since then. I am busy setting up a new website for this collection (it just doesn’t fit on this site), and I’ll post here once it’s up.

*UPDATE* The new website is now live! I invite you to have a look at www.strathcona-refineries.com.

*UPDATE* The exhibition is now up! Thanks to the whole Works crew that did such a great job—it looks terrific. While The Works Festival isn’t “on” yet, if you’re downtown you can drop by City Hall and have a look at the prints on display. I would really appreciate hearing your reactions and comments—either here (by leaving a reply below), by contacting me personally, or in person at the show reception on July 2nd.

*UPDATE* You can read a short interview that I did with Steve Waldner of The Works Festival about the show at http://theworksfest.wordpress.com/2011/06/16/strathcona-refineries-august-2010/

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

Raptor migration through Edmonton river valley

Coopers Hawk

Cooper's Hawk

Today, after a couple days of bad weather, I went for a walk at the Strathcona Science Park, a provincial park on the eastern edge of Edmonton (follow 17th street north from baseline road (101 ave)). The early autumn colours were starting to come out, but most striking was the number of raptors moving through the river valley. During my relatively short walk, I saw a pair of Swainson’s Hawks, several Red-tailed Hawks, a Bald Eagle perched in a snag, and a Cooper’s Hawk hunting Yellow-rumped Warblers in the shrubs along the river bank.

I didn’t get any photographs of the birds I saw today, so I thought I’d share this one—a Cooper’s Hawk that I caught while working as a bird bander at the Beaverhill Bird Observatory in Tofield. As you may judge from the photo, he was none too happy about the situation, but I really enjoyed getting a close-up look at one of these terrific birds.

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

Magpie tracks in fresh snow

The imprint of a magpies wing and tail are left behind in fresh snow

Magpie wingprint

After a couple centimeters of fresh, powdery snow, I went for a walk at the Strathcona Science Park along the North Saskatchewan River. In one area there were nearly a dozen spots where a magpie had dropped into the snow, leaving these beautiful impressions of its wing tips and long tail—thrown into beautiful detail by the low angle of the sun these days. I couldn’t tell what it was after under the snow, and I didn’t see any other magpie tracks outside of this one small area. If you have ever seen something similar, I’d love to hear you think this bird might have been up to.

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

A selection of my favourite landscape photographs from 2009

Several of my favourite Alberta landscape photographers have been posting small galleries of their past year’s best landscape photographs, so I decided to do the same. It was fun to look back through a year’s worth of photos, and impossible to decide which were my “favourite”. I decided to pick one favourite photo from each of the locations in Alberta that I regularly make photographs including: Jasper National Park, Waterton National Park, and the Icefields Parkway in the Rocky Mountains; and Ministik Lake Game Bird Sanctuary, Whitemud Ravine, Gold Bar Park, and the Strathcona Science Park closer to my home in Edmonton.

I’ve posted all of the photos below as a group (in chronological order) but I will also create a separate entry for each photo to provide extra details about the image like I usually do—just click on the link below each photo to go to it’s detail page. (It will take me a little while to get them all up)

I hope you enjoy this small collection, and I do always appreciate it if you leave a comment with your thoughts or reaction. Happy New Year, and I wish you many fine photographs in 2010!

Sun, shadow, fresh snow, and thin cloud on Mount Geraldine along the Icefields Parkway in Alberta, Canada

Mountain Geraldine ridge

Along the Icefields Parkway [Click for more details]

A darkening sky on a cold winter day through the bare branches of aspen and poplar trees

Pale winter sky through poplar canopy

Ministik Lake (in the winter)

Delicate white flowers bloom in front of a background of fern

Chickweed blooms and fern

Waterton National Park

Low clouds loom at dusk over a glassy calm boreal lake

Brooding cloud over Ministik Lake

Ministik Lake (in the summer) (I know that’s cheating a little)

The evening sky is reflected in multiple channels of the Athabasca River in Jasper National Park

Athabasca River island at dusk

Jasper National Park

Several birch trees stand bare in front of subtle fall colour in the North Saskatchewan River valley

Birch stems and early autumn colour

Goldbar Park (North Saskatchewan River Valley)

Frost-covered willow thicket at dawn in the Whitemud Ravine in Edmonton, Alberta

Late autumn willow thicket

Whitemud Ravine [Click for more details]

Heavy frost coats young alders saplings during an extreme cold snap in Edmonton, Alberta

Ice fog frozen on alder saplings

Strathcona Science Park [Click for more details]

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

Wintery Porcupine

Here’s another short video clip of this porcupine I came across while out photographing along the North Saskatchewan River in the Strathcona Science Park. He (or she) was pretty small, maybe about the size of a beach ball, and was not going anywhere–if I moved too suddenly he’d pause from his eating, but he never left his spot. It’s hard to imagine how a porcupine can get enough nutrition out of the dried grass and seeds that he’s eating here to be able to survive the kind of cold that we’ve been getting lately, but I guess they do.

You can push the fullscreen but­ton (four out­ward arrows at the bottom-right of the video) to view it larger, or fol­low the link to watch a high-definition ver­sion at vimeo.com.

Goldeneye flock flying over river

This past year I upgraded my camera to the Canon 5DmkII, it’s a terrific camera that I’m very happy with, and one of the neat tricks it does is shoot high definition video. I don’t shoot too much video—I’m a stills photographer at heart, regardless of what the camera can do—but it is fun to try once in a while.

I took this short video this past week during the cold snap—it shows a small flock of Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) ducks swimming in the river then taking off and flying, landing again a ways upriver. The ducks dive briefly under the water surface a couple of times before flying—my best guess is that they’re “de-icing” their wings (it was about -35° C that morning).

You can push the fullscreen button (four outward arrows at the bottom-right of the video) to view it larger, or follow the link to watch a high-definition version at vimeo.com.