I’m finally back in action! A couple folks knew the purpose for my long overdue trek to Southern Alberta and they made sure I went; I was there for some client work, some scouting and also just to get the hell of out dodge for a few days. Because Southern Alberta is not foreign territory to me, I was planning to be especially picky about the light, which is always challenging when traveling. I knew my time was very limited, so I planned to make the most of it and just soak up the goodness as we went along.
The good, bad and ugly of this photography related trek: a beautiful drive, A/C that quit during said drive, a 6-hour late arrival well past the sunset due to pea-soup foggy conditions and a washed out bridge (because of the Southern Alberta floods) … then far too many mosquitos (and bites), hazy, muggy and silly hot weather our first full day, road blocks, a lost iPhone, disappointing light at times, delicious light at times, being denied at the border, rain instead of sunsets, kind hearted folks, beautiful surroundings and a rubbish and so very long drive home, all in all it was a good, successful trip! I fell more in love with Pincher Creek and the surrounding areas; more in love with kind farmers and truckers; and more in love with the small town charm. It was terribly difficult to pack up and head home. We have a strong family connection with the Cardston area, and I felt very close to my grandfather, Sydney, during the whole trip, especially when basking in the glory that is Chief Mountain, his favourite mountain. I just know he’d would have gotten such a kick out of these fairly average Southern Alberta snaps. I have to say, two full days and three nights just isn’t enough time! I am counting the days until I go back there. Swoon.
I have a number of images to sort through and edit and I will be doing so in the next few weeks. Right now, I have a proposal deadline to take care of, so in the meantime, please enjoy a handful of photos I took with the iPhone. Stay tuned for more images, stories and other Southern Alberta photography musings!
I was happy to be contacted by ATB Financial to be a part of their 75 day long celebration in regards to their staggering milestone – 75 years in business serving Albertans! Of course being a native Albertan, plus a great lover of this province, especially our wondrous outdoors and strong community spirit, I jumped for it.
The Plains bison are an iconic species in Alberta, so it was fitting for ATB to incorporate strong Alberta images as part of their celebrations. Plains bison roaming at Elk Island National Park, where the tireless conservation efforts of the Parks Canada staff ensure these magnificent animals remain a part of our province for generations to come, is a wonderful example of what Alberta is all about.
I’m happy to work with them and have a quote by the great Jack Daines accompany my image. You can check out this image (and more!) on their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and you can download the postcard as part of their Postcards From Home series! Oh, don’t forget to check out the Edmonton Corn Maze this year, as they are also a part of ATB’s celebrations!
Thanks so much to ATB and Happy 75th, friends! Congratulations on being a successful Alberta institution!
We all have an idea of what Alberta means to us. I know what my Alberta is, and I will be posting such stories and images in a couple weeks, but I’d love to know one thing — what is YOUR Alberta?
See you in the field!
With the bison rut in full swing, I’ll be spending every spare moment photographing and documenting this fascinating time for the next few weeks. It’s a critical time for any species, but especially for an extirpated species, such as the plains bison, and it’s also critical for the conservation efforts that start here in Alberta and are carried out in other parts of the world. I’ve been going through notes and images, looking at what I have done right and wrong in the past when shooting the rut. I’m really hoping to accomplish a few things this time, as my focus has shifted somewhat, so it’s going to take hard work, amazing timing and a good deal of luck from nature to pull this off. Whether I do or don’t this season, it’s still just incredible to be out there amongst one of the most unbelievably cool species on earth.
As I was searching through older bison images and flagging them, I came across this one. I had not marked it for editing, but I also didn’t mark it for reference. It wasn’t sharp enough for a regular print, but it was clear I had kept it for a behavioural reference and just didn’t label it as such. Looking at this plains bison bull and his expression, I just thought it was a perfect representation of what I’ve seen of the annual bison rut from the perspective of a bull bison. They are highly hormonal, hungry, exhausted, stressed and have one thing on their minds — to mate.
A quick romp with the ol’ edit-cruncher, Silver Efex Pro 2, and a bit of tweaking and I came up with this bad boy below.
The bison rut king of 2012 ….
See you in the field!