I am pleased and very excited to announce that I will be editing a new book about Canadian Nature Photography for Rocky Mountain Books. This beautiful art book will be published in the fall of 2018 and will showcase a wide variety of some of the best nature photography made by Canada's visual artists specializing in photography. Besides an essay on nature photography by yours truly, the book will also feature a foreword by Freeman Patterson, arguably Canada's finest photographic artist. The submission process is now open and we are seeking submissions from photographers who have created a large body of excellent nature imagery. The publisher will be donating a portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book to a Canadian environmental organization to be determined in the near future.
As some of you know, I have been involved in promoting Canadian photography for years, going back to my humble beginnings in the early 80s. During the ensuing decades, I lectured and presented on various aspects of nature photography to various camera clubs and organizations, including the National Association for Photographic Art (NAPA). NAPA eventually merged with the Colour Photographic Association of Canada (CPAC) in 1996 to form the Canadian Association for Photographic Art (CAPA). The last 20 of my 40 years in photography have been spent pursuing a full-time career as a freelance photographer, specializing in nature photography.
It has been nearly two decades since Canadian nature photographers have been collectively featured in book form. The first major celebration that I can remember came in 1967 during Canada's centennial year when Lorraine Monk, celebrated Executive Producer of the Still Photography Division at the National Film Board, edited 'Canada – A Year of the Land'. This monumental work featured some of Canada's finest photographers of the day. In 1980, well-known Canadian photographer, J.A. Kraulis, edited a book called ‘The Art of Canadian Nature Photography’ and, in 1982, edited a second book called 'Canada: A Landscape Portrait'. In that same year, Lorraine Monk edited 'Canada With Love', a special tribute celebrating Canada's 115th birthday and the patriation of the Constitution of Canada. In 1990, Canada's photographic icon, Freeman Patterson, edited 'The Last Wilderness - Images of the Canadian Wild', a remarkable portrait of our wild places. Finally, Lorraine Monk returned in 1999 to edit 'Canada: These Things We Hold Dear – A Millennium Celebration' Honouring Canada’s Photographers'. It is our hope to continue this fine tradition by producing a new book featuring fine nature photography from Canada's exceptional photographers currently practicing today. I look forward to reviewing the submissions and eventually adding this book alongside the above mentioned titles to my personal collection of art books.
Anyone interested in being considered for possible inclusion in the book should consult the information provided on the Rocky Mountain Books website under 'Call to Nature Photographers'.
The submission process is now open and the deadline for receipt of submissions is December 15, 2017.
November 4, 2014
I just returned from attending the 2014 ‘Frame By Frame’ PhotoForum in Regina, Saskatchewan. As I had hoped, it was a weekend of INSPIRATION and, as usual, I learned a few things in the process too. I met new folks, rekindled old acquaintances and connected with ‘old friends’. Great food, good conversation and being immersed in a weekend of photographic events with like-minded folks is always refreshing and ‘gourmet food for the soul’!
Day 1 opened with ‘Wildlife As I See It’ by Dennis Fast. Dennis is an excellent nature photographer with a specialty in wildlife. In my opinion, Dennis creates the finest polar bear images! Being a retired school teacher/principal, it is not surprising that his program was very entertaining, full of interesting anecdotes and simply beautiful to watch. His latest book ‘Touch The Arctic’ should be an excellent seller!
Mufty Mathewson followed Dennis with ‘Rehabilitation Patients At Work’. Mufty, worked for a long time as a physiotherapist before moving on to photography some years later. Her program featured the various departments she was commissioned to photograph at a local hospital she was involved with. I found the content fascinating and enjoyed learning about the various opportunities available for patients with various physical and mental difficulties. Her image conversion from color to black & white was particularly effective. I believe this image conversion to B&W more effectively translated her vision than a color photograph would have done with this particular subject matter.
Dr. Branimir Gjetvaj started the afternoon program with a travelogue called ‘Wonders of Croatia’. As I was not personally very knowledgeable about the country, I found it interesting to learn more about Croatia’s natural heritage.
Susan McGillivray kept us entertained with her program ‘Music With Pictures’, taking us back into the 60s and 70s ‘memory lane’. My favorite part of that program was her ‘purely abstract images’.
'Yours truly' ended Day 1 with a program called ‘Meditations’ in which I shared my personal reflections about the natural world (Natural Reflections). This program is a ‘work in progress’ and a collaboration with my good friend and ‘designer extraordinaire’ Robert Peters. I illustrated concepts such as inspiration, seeing, intimacy, order and change. From the feedback I received afterwards, it appears the program resonated very well with the viewers.
Day 2 began with Freeman Patterson, arguably one of the world’s finest artists. His program ‘Embracing Creation’ was based on his latest book of the same name. In November of 2013, the Beaverbrook Gallery in Fredericton, New Brunswick honored Freeman with a ‘retrospective exhibition’ of his life’s work to date. Freeman spoke to us about Creativity and then followed up with an illustrated program about ‘design’. I personally learn so much from listening to him speak on the topic of ‘design’ and I simply love seeing his imagery. Freeman has already inspired a few generations. Don’t miss his latest book ‘Embracing Creation’.
Larry Easton followed with ‘Sacred Places in Rural Saskatchewan & The Art of Architecture’. Working on a similar project, I was quite fascinated in learning about his personal process and seeing his many fine images in his new book called ‘Legacy of Worship’.
The two-day seminar ended with a ‘bubbly program’ by Darlene Young called ‘Introduction to Liquid Art Photography’. I very much enjoyed the strong, graphic nature of her abstract images. Darlene obviously has a lot of fun creating her images!
I would like to sincerely that Bill Inglis, the Event Coordinator, as well as his great team of volunteers who worked tirelessly to bring together an interesting program for the participants. I believe this was the 12th such event that he and his various teams have organized over the years. As a result of organizing many similar events in the past, I am well aware that it takes a lot of effort and dedication in making these happen as well as be successful. So, on behalf of all the speakers who presented, I wish to sincerely thank Deb Balbar, Shelley Bremner, Lyn Cadence, Shirley Costrom, Ken and Bard Dickson, Frank Dyck, Larry Easton, Phil Frohman, Wayne Gilmer, DeLee Grant, Judy Hamilton, Bill Inglis, Dave Innes, Ken Jones, Lloyd Jones, Heather Loewenhardt, Helen McCaslin, Susan McGillivray, Rose Odling and Len Suchan.
October 29, 2014
'Frame by Frame' Photography Conference, hosted by the Regina Shutterbugs, happens in Regina, SK this coming weekend, November 1 and 2, 2014. On Saturday, I will be presenting 'Meditations' , my reflections on the natural world. I will be in the company of some great photographers and friends. I am particularly looking forward to seeing Freeman Patterson's presentation on 'Embracing Creation', based on his new book and retrospective exhibition of the same name that came out last fall. Freeman is arguably Canada's finest photographic artist. Unfortunately I couldn't make it to the launch of 'Embracing Creation' because of prior commitments so I will be savoring the images on Sunday. I purchased a copy of the book the first day it was released as I just couldn't wait. I am also looking forward to seeing the works of Dennis Fast, Mufty Mathewson, Larry Easton and more!
One of the images I will be presenting is 'Milky Way', created at Klotz Lake in northern Ontario a few weeks ago. My friend and colleague, Peter Blahut, had stopped on the shores of this lake just after the sun had sunk below the horizon. We decided to make a few images of the Milky Way that was beginning to emerge through the darkening sky. As time wore on, we began to notice a tinge of northern light activity until it became quite pronounced and is seen here as a 'green glow' throughout much of the image. I made three relatively quick exposures of the Milky Way, taking care to include some overlap so that I could stitch a panorama as the final image. The night sky is just so inspiring, mysterious and too often overlooked.
September 2, 2014
I look forward to sharing the stage once again with Freeman Patterson, Dennis Fast and other colleagues in Regina, Saskatchewan on November 1 and 2, 2014. 'Frame by Frame' will feature a host of photographers sharing their latest images. While some of us presented in Regina two years ago, this seminar will feature all NEW programs. I have always maintained that seminars are an excellent venue for instruction and inspiration at a nominal fee. In the past I personally have been inspired at seminars by such photography greats as Ernst Haas, Freeman Patterson, Frans Lanting, John Shaw, Paul Caponigro, Pat O'Hara, John Netherton, Daryl Benson, Darwin Wiggett, Craig Richards, Andre Gallant, George Tice, Jim Divitale, Nick Vedros and .... just too many to list! Whenever I have the