Bull Dozer and GMC Cab and Chassis
Cab and Chassis and Panel Van 1
Cab and Chassis and Panel Van 2
Cab and Chassis and Panel Van 3
Cab and Chassis and Panel Van 4
Fargo and Other – Sangudo, Alberta
Fargo Dump Truck 1
Fargo Dump Truck 2
Fargo Dump Truck 3
Fargo Dump Truck 4
“It will grow on you,” describes the growing appreciation for something that comes about through regular interaction with that entity over time. Books and music ‘grow on us.’ Styles come and go, and, they grow upon us – we acclimate to them. Friendships, perhaps even relationships subtly grow on us without our knowing it – we realize their entity at a certain point, perhaps in their first absence. Gathering museum machinery images associated with the Alaska Highway construction has had several images grow on me, me seeing and appreciating more of what they are about over time. This equipment has been kept up, maintained in working order over two or perhaps three generations. Function, style, colour and form have each been preserved. That’s something that someone has had a hand in doing, perhaps many hands have shared in doing.
Listening to – Nick Drake’s ‘Pink Moon’ and Tyler Bates’ rendering of ‘Ventura.’
Quote to Inspire – “I think good dreaming is what leads to good photographs.” – Wayne Miller
Peace River Sunset – Fort Vermilion, Alberta 1
Peace River Sunset – Fort Vermilion, Alberta 2
Sunday evening, on my own, at Fort Vermilion’s boat launch I witnessed the sun drop below the horizon and the dusky, rich colours and lengthening shadows produced – day’s end in the land of the Midnight Sun. The event recalls (and was perhaps inspired by) redjim99’s poem, his 200th, on his ‘notyethere’ wordpress blog, ‘The Road at Sunset’ and his discussion of the illusion of horizon; accurate and cleanly worked – it is worth checking out.
Listening to – ‘Thank U’ by Alanis Morissette and David Gray’s ‘My Oh My.’
Quote to Inspire – “I am not an artist. I am an image maker.” – Thomas Hoepker
Valleyview Bench Seats 1
Valleyview Bench Seats 2
Valleyview Bench Seats 3
More than a passing glance, photography has you stop and see the subject, consider context and best perspective and then expose the image. Editing takes you one further step with the image; you encounter more of what comprises the image and more of what is possible for the image in its rendering. Here, are the Valleyview bench seats again, exposed in the full morning sun of a sunny, Sunday morning. Two weeks on from the exposure, I’m seeing more of the light and shadow-play in the image. I’m coming back to it to see what else it can become. The image reveals someone’s attempt to make the bench seats something more permanent with the anchoring of the base on the right. The image has me consider the weathering of the seats through yet another winter season. And, at the time of exposure I had no idea that I would be tinting the image toward red or blue, or, that I would be working the image through in black and white.
Listening to – Johnny Cash’s rendering of “God’s Going to Cut You Down.”
Quote to Inspire – “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” – Ansel Adams
Along the Road – Woking, Alberta
Barn – Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta 1
Barn – Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta 2
Canadian National Bridge – Edmonton, Alberta
Grain Shed – Manning, Alberta 1
Grain Shed – Manning, Alberta 2
Grain Shed – Manning, Alberta 3
Grain Shed – Near Figure 8 Lake, Alberta
Train Trestle – Sangudo, Alberta
Alone, along the road, driving home, structures from a former time and world that Alberta was age and erode with the seasons. Cared about structures are kept for their continued functionality, others for their memorial’s sake, to remember people and their time. Other structures, uncared for, decay and become derelict, awaiting demise. Each informs of their former time – what was then and what was on the go and what it was like being there (and then). Halt the car, grab camera and tripod, look around … repeat … all the way home. Snow melts. Spring takes hold.
Listening to – Joshua Redman’s ‘Stop this Train,’ and Sigur Ros’ ‘Svefn-G-Englar’ and ‘Glosoli.’
Quote to Inspire – “It’s not how a photographer looks at the world that is important. It’s their intimate relationship with it.” – Antoine D’Agata
Sangudo Duo – Sangudo, Alberta
Sidelined at day’s end, looking in to the vehicles of Sangudo’s Alaska Highway Construction Museum, creating an exposure through chain-link fence using smallest depth of field during the stretch of evening’s Golden hour and liking the colour, shape and shadow-work associated with these two trucks from that former time.
Listening to – Ed Sheeran’s ‘The A Team,’ Ben E. King’s ‘Stand By Me,’ Bruce Springsteen’s ‘One Step Up’ and Bill Mallonee & The Vigilantes of Love’s ‘Resplendent’ and ‘Nothing Like a Train.’
Quote to Inspire – “The idea of photography seemed to come together with the idea that this is how I could be – someone who could have one step in the world while at the same time being one step removed from it.” – Donovan Wylie
Westward Haul – Valleyview, Alberta 1
A horse trailer being hauled westward crests a hill on a quiet and sunny, Sunday morning, descending into a huge valley between Valleyview and Grande Prairie, Alberta. Notable among this landscape’s relief and early spring colour is the full absence of snow.
Listening to – Stan Tracey’s ‘Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered,’ mellow jazz to begin this Wednesday morning; then, it’s on to John Hicks’ and ‘Fatha’s Bedtime Story.’
Quote to Inspire – “A good photograph is knowing where to stand.” – Ansel Adams
Seats – Valleyview, Alberta 1
Seats – Valleyview, Alberta 2
Around Alberta, perhaps especially in the north with its longer distances travelled to school, along the highway you’ll discover structures parents have created for their children in which to wait for the school bus. The structure might be a five by five, closed-in shack with windows on the sides to watch for buses; the shack allows students respite from wind and weather while waiting. Here, two bench seats have been pulled from a car or truck to create a place to sit and wait for the school bus; the seats may be also departure point for people waiting for a ride … perhaps when thumbing a ride. I found the pair of seats on the road between Valleyview and Grande Prairie, on my drive home with my son’s effects. He’ll be home from University today, after touring British Columbia with the University of Alberta Mixed Chorus. The colour-work of tinting images reminds of Dan Kameka and his work with farm machinery and farm structures – the Sexsmith grain elevator comes to mind, an eight foot image in Grande Prairie’s Trumpeter Hotel … the first place I encountered Dan’s work.
Listening to – Chris Whitley … ‘Dust Radio’ still captivates my hearing lyrically and in terms of its sound structure; I’ve heard two versions, one unplugged and one from the ‘Living with the Law’ album – liking both … unplugged is what drew my attention.
Quote to Inspire – “Quit trying to find beautiful objects to photograph. Find the ordinary objects so you can transform it by photographing it.” – Morley Baer
47 Ford Among Trucks – Sangudo, Alberta
Chevrolet – Sangudo, Alberta
Fargo – Sangudo, Alberta 2
Fargo – Sangudo, Alberta
Waiting – Looking On, Sangudo, Alberta
MacKenzie Highway trucks recall the scheming of Mack and the boys read about in John Steinbeck’s novel, ‘Cannery Row.’ A Ford truck is borrowed from Lee Chong. With some effort one of the boys with a talent for ‘fixin’ gets the truck going and everyone departs to retrieve frogs for Doc, somewhere up the California coast. In the midst of their travels a carburetor gives out …. Within hours one of the boys with the talent for ‘fixin’ and another for theft has thieved a carburetor from another Ford. Once attached the boys continue on in their adventure heading to an ideal frog gathering spot, a pond of a congress woman and her husband, the husband protects the property as guard. Their conversation, shifts from protector and trespasser to pet owner and vet as Mack doctors the man’s dog, a sickly bitch suffering with a tick embedded in its fur. The bond of friendship grows and the man invites all in for a drink … during prohibition … the happy hour becomes a middle-of-the-night, rollicking, drunken, frog gathering party that leaves the pond owner, congress woman’s husband sleeping on his floor as Mack and the boys get back in the Ford truck and return home. A Ford truck is necessary prop within the narrative (revised after yesterday’s writing in haste …)
Listening to Chris Whitley – ‘Living with the Law,’ ‘Big Sky Country,’ ‘Kick the Stones,’ ‘Make the Dirt Stick’ and ‘Poison Girl.’
Quote to Inspire – “A photograph has picked up a fact of life, and that fact will live forever.” Raghu Rai
1938 Ford Two Ton Cab and Chassis – Sangudo, Alberta
A chain-link fence surrounds Sangudo, Alberta’s MacKenzie Highway Construction Truck Museum, a tribute to people and equipment that built the highway. The museum, its vehicles and equipment sit idle. You can look from the fence in; but, you cannot physically interact with the vehicles within the museum compound. The vehicles that are sixty-years or more old are in good shape; they have been kept well. Last spring I searched for the owner of the museum to see if he’d permit access to the compound and allow me to photograph the vehicles; I will need to do my homework if I am to find his contact information and try again for better images of those trucks. It’s a shame only to see them from the sidelines.
A black and red 1938 two ton cab and chassis sits waiting for further use.
Listening to – The Congregation’s ‘Don’t Pay No Mind,’ Chris Whitley’s ‘Dust Radio’ and the Eagles’ ‘Seven Bridges Road.’ Coldplay’s ‘Yellow’ has been in my hearing this weekend at my daughter’s dance festival; the story behind ‘Yellow’ is a heart-warming, mother-son, story … something to be understood and not to be missed.
Quote to Inspire – “Photography is the only language that can be understood anywhere in the world.” – Bruno Barbey
CN Caboose – Edmonton, Alberta
City of Edmonton Skyline
Cab & Chassis – Sangudo, Alberta
Barn – Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta
Sometimes a fence, sometimes physical distance, sometimes a line to be respected and not crossed – in each case a barrier stands between the subject and your camera. When you cannot interact directly with your photo’s subject, you shoot from the sidelines … and can still get the shot. You see the situation for what it is and work with what ‘is’. Each of these photos were shot from the sidelines – the CN caboose, the Fort Saskatchewan barn, the city of Edmonton Skyline and the windshields of the truck cabs.
Listening to – Ben E. King’s ‘Stand by Me’ and Toby Keith’s ‘Red Solo Cup.’
Quote to Inspire – “All the technique in the world doesn’t compensate for the inability to notice.” – Elliott Erwitt