December 20, 2016
As one year draws to an end, another is just about to begin. I managed to get out photographing a few times in the last 10 days or so, albeit during the coldest stretch of winter to date. I travelled to Lake Winnipeg at Victoria Beach on one occasion, the open prairie around Lorette and Grande Pointe on another, Birds Hill Provincial Park on a third occasion and finally, Sandilands Provincial Forest on the final one where I made this image of the sun setting through jack pine trees. It was bitterly cold with temperatures hovering around minus 30 degrees Celsius. With a cutting breeze, the windchill dropped the temperature to around minus 40 degrees Celsius. I was toasty warm walking through the forest except for my face and hands. I have yet to find a balaclava to work well with with glasses (I now have three of them including a very expensive one). I managed to keep the fingers from freezing but I had accidentally left the thinner silk gloves in my other winter coat; I normally slip these thinner silk gloves into a slightly thicker pair when temperatures are extreme.
I love the silence at this time of year! I thought this image was fitting for the coming festive season.
Wishing you Happy Holidays and All The Best for 2017 !
Spring has been a lingering affair this year with a greater than usual repetition of melting and freezing events. A few weeks ago, I meandered into the Seine River Forest and made a few images of ice that formed on pools and puddles at the edge of the trees as well as images of the melting ice on the Seine River itself. The late afternoon sun created a lovely contrast between warm and cool colors. Click on the main image to see the other images in the gallery.
February 2, 2015
January ended with a blast of cold and surprisingly beautiful sundogs and a halo.
I happened to look out my window early Saturday morning while managing my email messages and noticed that sundogs were accompanying the rising sun. I didn't think much about the weather and within a few minutes, I was driving out of Winnipeg. Within 5 minutes, I made my first stop on the TransCanada Highway east of Winnipeg and soon realized that it was bitterly cold. At -30 degrees Celsius and with a good wind to boot, it was closer to -40 degrees Celsius. One could barely stay out for a few minutes at a time. I must have stayed out there longer than I should have because my daughter noticed 'splotchy skin' on my face, an indication that I had suffered mild frost bite - the price nature photographers often pay for their craft and art!
A sundog (parhelion) is an atmospheric phenomenon that consists of a pair of bright spots on either side on the sun, often co-occurring with a luminous ring known as a 22° halo. In the last two images, such a halo surrounds the sun. Sun dogs occur when plate-shaped hexagonal ice crystals from very cold weather or from high and cold cirrus clouds refract light. The crystals, which act as prisms, bend the light rays at a minimum of 22°. A halo (complete ring around the sun) occurs if the ice crystals are randomly oriented. However, if the crystals sink through the air and become vertically aligned, the sunlight is refracted horizontally, resulting in sundogs.
I made the following images with a 17-35mm lens set to its widest focal length except for the last image where I used a 24mm PC or tilt/shift lens. Both lens were fitted with a polarizing filter to increase the contrast and saturate the colors. All images, except for the first one, were made near Lorette, Manitoba.
December 10, 2014
The December / January 2015 issue of Country Magazine featured an article and photographs of my experience in the Canadian Rockies. SNOW BOUND is the latest in an on-going series about God's Country!
December 5, 2014
This is my first image in the treesinfourseasons challenge. I have been challenged by my friend Joe Kerr to submit 4 images of trees, one in each of the four seasons.
At least once a year - and sometimes two or three times - the landscape around Winnipeg gets covered with a magical coating of hoarfrost. Often, I will head up north on Hwy 15 from the TransCanada and look for this Manitoba Maple tree. It's just a prairie maple at the edge of the road but it often looks spectacular when covered in frost. In this particular image, I added a slight texture of denim which imparted a bit of a surreal look.
I challenge Peter Blahut to the #treesinfourseasons challenge.
Your challenge images must represent all four seasons, one from each season. With each entry please challenge one other person and use the hashtag #treesinfourseasons so everyone can search to find all the entries as the challenge progresses.