Dyrhólaey Arch – Lighthouse

Beginning Southward - Iceland 1
Beginning Southward – Iceland 1
Beginning Southward - Iceland 2
Beginning Southward – Iceland 2
Beginning Southward - Iceland 3
Beginning Southward – Iceland 3
Beginning Southward - Iceland 4
Beginning Southward – Iceland 4
Cloudwork, Þjóðvegur, Southern Region - Iceland 1
Cloudwork, Þjóðvegur, Southern Region – Iceland 1
Cloudwork, Þjóðvegur, Southern Region - Iceland 2
Cloudwork, Þjóðvegur, Southern Region – Iceland 2
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 1
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 1
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 2
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 2
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 3
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 3
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 4
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 4
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 5
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 5
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 6
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 6
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 7
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 7
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 8
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 8
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 9
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 9
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 10
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 10
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 11
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 11
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 12
Lighthouse at Dyrhólaey Arch, Iceland 12

I was in Iceland a year ago. The time was opportunity to move within and over unexplored terrain, alone. I would respond to it all, feasting my eyes through my camera lens, always working to understand the visual narrative of the land, its weather and people.

The windward-leeward interaction of mountain weather is a visible dynamic in Iceland. Atlantic clouds push into mountains producing rainy, spitting drizzle along their path. On the lee side they roll down, over mountains becoming a moving cloud blanket that dissipates, evaporating in its encounter with sunlight. Iceland’s cloud-work is extraordinary in its shift and shape, its play of light and shadow, its depths and in its interaction with the island. It is mountain weather, weather that can change radically within the space of a few moments. What was seen is revealed, here, as high dynamic range HDR images.

The lighthouse grounds at the Dyrhólaey Arch serve as orienting point for most images. From this crag black, volcanic sand beaches are visible. The Atlantic Ocean shimmers and rolls in. Mist and rain shroud distant islands. And, rays of sunlight stream through cloud and reflect upon the ocean. Inland, mountain snow melts exposing rock, sand and dirt. Lighthouse access is found driving up the side of this mountain outcrop along a steep, muddy, one-track gravel road, a series of switchbacks without road barriers. Poor weather needs a careful driver’s eye to prevent an unfortunate tumble off this crag. With my smaller SUV (a 2006 Ford Escape), the climb and descent were exhilarating as was greeting opposing traffic.

Quote to Consider / Inspire: “I never tried to revolutionize photography; I just do what I do and keep my fingers crossed that people will like it.” – David Bailey

Listening to – two ‘On Being with Krista Tippett’ interviews/podcasts: ‘Carlo Rovelli – All Reality Is Interaction’ and ‘Pádraig Ó Tuama – Belonging Creates and Undoes Us Both;’ ‘The Candid Frame podcast with Ursula Tocik;’ and, Ólafur Arnalds, Atli Örvarsson & SinfoniaNord perform ‘Öldurót,’ a remembrance in music, recalling Iceland.

Summer Repose

Alberta Legislature Building - Edmonton, Alberta Canada 1
Alberta Legislature Building – Edmonton, Alberta Canada 1
Alberta Legislature Building - Edmonton, Alberta Canada 2
Alberta Legislature Building – Edmonton, Alberta Canada 2
Alberta Legislature Building - Edmonton, Alberta Canada 3
Alberta Legislature Building – Edmonton, Alberta Canada 3

Summer had begun. I left my truck at a Ford dealership for service and cycled eastward within Edmonton’s river valley. The morning featured billowing clouds against a bright blue sky. Rain and sun would feature throughout the day. I gathered in the world that met me with my camera. Here, the Alberta Legislature building sits in quiet summer morning repose.

Quote to Consider – “Photography is an art of observation. It has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” – Elliot Erwitt

Listening to – Wardruna’s ‘Runaljod Raganarok’ album; if you are into the ‘Vikings’ mini-series, Wardruna provides the opening and closing soundscape, a song entitled ‘Völuspá.’ ‘Raido’ and ‘Odal’ are songs of interest.

Morning Images

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 1

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 2

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 3

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 4

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 5

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 6

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 7

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 8

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 9

Morning Images - High Level, Alberta - Canada 10

Enjoying spring’s weather and colour in these morning images along 20 kilometres from High Level to our airport and back.

Quote to Consider/Inspire – “The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” – Pablo Picasso

Listening to – Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Born in the U.S.A. (Live Acoustic Version)’ from The Bridge School Concerts – 25th Anniversary Edition,’ Peter Gabriel’s ‘Shaking the Tree’ and Jason Isbell’s ‘Speed Trap Town.’

Wildfire Held

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 2

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 3

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 4

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 5

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 6

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 7

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 8

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 9

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 9b

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 9c

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 10

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 11

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 11a

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 12

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 13

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 14

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 15

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 16

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 17

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 18

Wildfire - High Level, Ab - 4 May 2016 - 19

Leaving school at day’s end yesterday, billows of white and tan smoke filled the blue sky south from High Level. Product at the Norbord strand-board plant burned. An order for evacuation of residents nearest the plant saw RCMP moving home to home asking people to leave the area. Residents were able to return home at noon today. They were to remain on immediate alert in case the currently held 3 hectare wildfire threatened with a change in weather conditions. Firefighters, slinging-helicopters and a water-bomber team all fought yesterday’s blaze from late afternoon until late in the evening.

Listening to – Sleeping At Last’s version of ‘The Safety Dance,’ Chris Garneau’s ‘The Leaving Song,’ Matthew Perryman-Jones’ ‘O Theo,’ Peter Bradley Adams’ ‘Be Still My Heart,’ One Republic’s ‘Ordinary Human,’ Lily and Madeleine’s ‘Things I’ll Later Lose’ and Ross Copperman’s ‘Holding On and Letting Go.’

Quote to Consider – ‘All photographs are accurate. None of them is the truth.’ – Richard Avedon

Afternoon Drive – Late Winter

Aquamarine Ford F-150 - Tompkin's Landing, Ab Canada 1
Aquamarine Ford F-150 – Tompkin’s Landing, Ab Canada 1
Aquamarine Ford F-150 - Tompkin's Landing, Ab Canada 2
Aquamarine Ford F-150 – Tompkin’s Landing, Ab Canada 2
Buttertown Buildings - Fort Vermilion, Ab Canada
Buttertown Buildings – Fort Vermilion, Ab Canada
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 1
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 1
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 2
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 2
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 3
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 3
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 4
La Crete Heritage Museum Buildings 4
Old Tompkin's Landing Ferry 1
Old Tompkin’s Landing Ferry 1
Old Tompkin's Landing Ferry 2
Old Tompkin’s Landing Ferry 2
Stuck in Snow - Buttertown, Fort Vermilion, AB Canada
Stuck in Snow – Buttertown, Fort Vermilion, AB Canada

I got out for an afternoon drive on a Saturday late in February. I gathered my cameras and set off for a look around within Alberta’s MacKenzie Municipal District.

From High Level I traveled south. I would cross the Peace River ice bridge through slushy water at Tompkin’s Landing, traveling no more than 10km/h. Before I got there, on the hill descending toward the ice bridge a blue, aquamarine colour caught my eye. The colour belonged to a seventies Ford F-150. Someone had dragged it a ways into the trees. It, like the 1970 Buick GS next to it, had served a purpose and was left there – a rusting relic. Tromping into knee deep snow I gathered photos.

Driving past Blue Hills, farms held livestock, the occasional horse and derelict farming implements. I detoured along back roads behind Buffalo Head Prairie. There, second and third generation families are operating farms that have grown in size through the years. Many families are moving from original homestead homes built in the forties into new homes. The older homesteads stand holding memory’s residue. Next, I drove behind La Crete to the Heritage museum. The museum site holds old buildings from the La Crete area, old farming implements and machinery. The old Tompkin’s Landing ferry that transferred people and vehicles across the Peace River is there. The museum is one I want to return to for photos. And, people are invited to arrange a tour of the site. It might be something to see in early June.

Later, in moving past Fort Vermilion and into Buttertown, I managed to get my truck stuck in snow. I had seen some Buttertown buildings built with Swedish log cut corners. They were likely more than a hundred years old and I had been meaning to photograph them for a while. In parking my truck on a snowy road shoulder, I got too close to the shoulder’s edge and my truck and I slid sideways into the ditch. I did not have to wait too long for help though. A young Mennonite farmer out for a drive with his date stopped. He took some time (an hour or so) and was able to pull my truck back onto the road. And, he didn’t want anything for his trouble. He was just being neighborly. Good on him!

I stayed in Buttertown for another hour or so before sundown and my return home with pictures, better for being out of the house, better for being away from town, grateful for all that my afternoon had held.

Quote to Consider – “Sometimes I do get to places just when God’s ready to have somebody click the shutter.” – Ansel Adams

Listening to – Martyn Joseph’s ‘Strange Way,’ Bruce Cockburn’s ‘Wondering Where the Lions Are,’ David Gray’s ‘My Oh My’ and James Taylor’s ‘Country Road.’

Watt Mountain Weather

Watt Mountain Weather - High Level, Ab Canada 1
Watt Mountain Weather – High Level, Ab Canada 1
Watt Mountain Weather - High Level, Ab Canada 2
Watt Mountain Weather – High Level, Ab Canada 2
Watt Mountain Weather - High Level, Ab Canada 3
Watt Mountain Weather – High Level, Ab Canada 3

After a late winter snow, my truck brought me up the 12 kilometre climb to the top of Watt Mountain and its weather.

Listening to – Agnes Obel’s ‘Fivefold,’ Junip’s ‘Don’t Let It Pass,’ Coldplay’s ‘Another’s Arms’ and U2’s ‘Song for Someone.’

Quote to Consider – “Photography is for me, a spontaneous impulse that comes from an ever-attentive eye, which captures the moment and its eternity.” – Henri Cartier Bresson

Fire Fought

Early morning, two Saturdays ago, one of the High Level hotels burned to the ground; thank you’s go out to the High Level Fire Department for bringing the blaze under control and limiting its scope.

Listening to – Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Radio Nowhere,’The Who’s ‘I Can See For Miles’ and the Primitives’ ‘Crash.’

Quote to Consider – “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.’ – Dorothea Lange