November 12, 2014
The goutweed near the patio is waiting for Mother Nature to smother it under snow. In this season between 'fall and winter', it is, for now, a 'study of lines', in which I created 'order from the chaos'.
November 11, 2014
REMEMBRANCE - it's a sobering day, a day we 'honor the fallen' who have fought for us, for our freedom and for our democracy. It's also a day when I remember my own 'fallen souls' - my parents, brother-in-law, family members and friends.
Yesterday, as I was preparing the yard for the coming snow, I walked by the standing remains of a tall lily plant. I was reminded of the beautiful images by Ernst Haas that I had the privilege of seeing for an entire weekend some 30 years ago. I had never before seen the beauty in the decaying but that weekend changed my perspective on so many things. The leaves that so tightly wrapped the thick, slender stem were colorful but subdued. I made a couple of images with my iPhone and, this morning, I combined them into a 'montage', an abstraction that seemed to honor those who came before me.
Gone, not forgotten but remembered!
LIFE is BEAUTIFUL but FRAGILE. Let US also REMEMBER that!
Clouds had rolled in earlier in the afternoon and I was now driving along the shoreline of Clearwater Lake on my way to vsit friends. The sun would set momentarily and I could see a line of pink color hovering an otherwise darkish blue sky. I'm often attracted to minimalist landscapes like this one so I took the first road leading down to the lake. I quickly jumped out of the van, grabbed the tripod-mounted camera, made a quick compsition and captured the scene above. I felt good about this image from the point of view of the warm and cool color contrast as much as about the minimalist palette. Eventhough it was bitterly cold and windy, I felt rather hopeful after making this image.
As I turned around and started heading up the hill, I noticed a memorial with a handful of flowers laying in the snow. I suddenly realized where I was - at the Pump House where Helen Betty Osborne, a 19 year-old Cree Aboriginal woman from Norway House, was brutally murdered on November 13, 1971 after being kidnapped, sexually assaulted, severely beaten and stabbed. She had come to The Pas to further her education in the hopes of becoming a teacher. It wasn't until some 16 years later that 4 local men were finally implicated in her death but only one man was ever convited of this horrible crime. The town of Norway House honoured her by naming the local school 'The Helen Betty Osborne Ininew Education Resource Centre'. I remember how this singular incident had really bothered me when I first learned about it shortly after moving to Winnipeg in 1985. I have come to this location on a number of occasions to photograph the lake as it is one of only a handful of access points to the lake. How many more people have suffered a similar fate and how many more have yet to suffer the same...