painting and photographic works

Posts tagged “landscape photography

2018 – My Favorite Photos

Here is a collection of my favorite photos from each month in 2018. I didn’t start out looking to adhere to any particular theme but as it turns out, all of these are images of the natural environment and they were all taken close to my home, in Edmonton’s river valley.



March:DSC_7842 edit










So there you go, my “favorite” photos taken in Edmonton during each month of 2018. For some months it was hard picking a favorite, so, especially towards the end, I would default to the image that was most consistent with the developing “nature” theme. I am tempted to assemble another collection focusing on my black and white, or abstract photos from 2018 – stay tuned.


Impressions of Autumn II

In my last post I shared five abstract photos emphasizing the colors of autumn. It turns out that I have more images from that photo shoot (in Edmonton’s river valley) that really appeal to me and I hope that you will like too:






River’s Edge

A look at the shapes and tones at the edge of the North Saskatchewan River in Edmonton (in early April 2016). A few weeks earlier the river was covered in ice but now the river is clear with just a few big chunks of ice sit washed up on the shore. The ice decaying but reveals a captivating crystalline structure:






Moodier in Black and White

Here are some photos taken on the same outing as my hike last Sunday in Edmonton’s  Mill Creek Ravine – but taking out the color the images have a much moodier feel.


Spring Slope


Stairs and a Patch of Snow


Trunk on a Diagonal


All Quiet Under the Bridge


Tangled Slope


and as a bonus, a black and white image from beside the river in Edmonton’s Louise McKinney Park:


Promenade Beside the Ice

Late Winter – Black and White

Here is a little collection of black and white photos themed around the patterns and textures of late winter (late February at my home here in Edmonton).


“Last Year’s Plume”


“Irregular Patchwork”




“Ice and the Far Edge”


“Temporary Condition”

A few more photos from this photo shoot may be seen on another of my blogs: YEGmonton.

Winter Nature – Black and White

Here are a few of my recent black and white photos showing Edmonton’s river valley in early January.


Path Through the Riverside Brush


Snow Covered Tangle


Patterns In and On (and the Edmonton Queen)


Up a Snowy Trail


Downtown Edmonton Over the Frozen North Saskatchewan River

Nature Softened

Here are some recent abstract photos of natural subjects. The edges have been softened and blurred by varying amounts of camera movement during an extended exposure (a couple of seconds).

Landscape H

Landscape H



Tree 16290

Tree 16290

Dream Front

Dream Front

Landscape V

Landscape V

Spring Sneaks In (Part 1)

As April arrives in this part of the world (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), spring continues its advance. Although it will be a good month longer until the bare trees will burst into leaf, the snow (even that which fell in the last week) is mostly melted and there is something in the air that warms the soul and brings a smile to my face.

Today while out walking in Edmonton’s river valley I caught these images, these hints of life to come:

Shrubs and Sticks

Shrubs and Sticks

Path to Spring

Path to Spring

Tracks in the Mud

Tracks in the Mud

Slow Spring

Slow Spring

Spring Sky

Spring Sky

Yukon Landscapes – Black and White

I have recently been reviewing (and cleaning up) some photos from a trip taken a number of years ago. It was June of 1993 when we set off driving from Edmonton to the Yukon and Alaska. In this post I feature 5 landscape photos taken on the way back. I don’t remember exactly where each of these were taken – most likely in southern Yukon but possibly southeast Alaska or northern British Columbia.

These photos were all shot on color slide film then scanned and digitized a few years ago. That process did not yield great results but after a bit of work with Lightroom I have achieved some images that are presentable. Black and white digital processing seemed particularly suited to these landscapes:

Around the Bend With Rapids

Around the Bend With Rapids

Black and White Road

Black and White Road

Cloud Build-up

Cloud Build-up

Rock in the River

Rock in the River

Trees on a Rocky Bank

Trees on a Rocky Bank

Artistic Retreat

For the second year, the first week of July has been an opportunity to escape the city and normal responsibilities for the serenity of the countryside and the inspiration of being around like-minded artists.

My makeshift outdoor studio

My makeshift outdoor studio

A group of 12 painters gathered at the Lazy M Lodge in rural central Alberta for five days of rest, relaxation and rejuvenation.

Alberta countryside near the Lazy M

Alberta countryside near the Lazy M

The North Raven River

The North Raven River beside the Lazy M

My main goal  for the week was to focus on painting but I knew my eye would be drawn to many more sights than I could attempt to paint. Therefore my camera would be close at hand and be put to good use capturing references for current and future landscape paintings  as well as for some things that are just more suited to photographic images than paint.

My goals for the week were pretty loose but I did want to focus on landscape painting and I did want to work larger and looser with acrylic than I had done the previous year. So I did away with the backpack and pochade box and working on by 9 by 12 inch boards. This year I wouldn’t be packing my gear – I brought some medium size (22 by 28 inch; 56 by 71 cm) stretched canvases, a portable easel and a (5 foot long) folding table. I pre-mixed my acrylic paints  half-and-half with a heavy gel to help hold the texture and to extend the working time. I also would use a couple of stay-wet, sealable palettes for color mixing. I used a split-primary color palette and would do mos of my painting thick and with a palette knife)

Paint for the week

Paint for the week

Lazy M Driveway

Lazy M Driveway

Of course, my eye was looking not only for landscapes that I could paint quasi-en-plein-air but also for inspirations for future studio abstract paintings. I re-visisted my long-exposure with camera-motion technique to generate some of these ideas:

Green Between Pink

Green Between Pink

A project that the group of 12 painters undertook during the week was to produce this composite canvas (4 feet square) to be left at the Lazy M Lodge:

Lazy M Group Project

Lazy M Group Project

It wasn’t a highly productive week in terms of completed canvases. In fact I completed only 2 (and one is not a keeper). I got a good start on another couple of canvases forming a landscape diptych. Nonetheless, it was a very beneficial week – the rest and rejuvenation benefits can not be understated.

For more photos visit my Lazy M 2014 Flickr album.

Spirit of Spring Landscapes (Part 2)

Here are some more abstract landscape photos depicting the spirit of early spring – as the snow bids a hasty retreat at the end of March (in Edmonton).

Abstract Landscape 403-027

Abstract Landscape 403-074

Abstract Landscape 403-041

Abstract Landscape 403-052

Abstract Landscape 403-027

See my earlier blog post for additional photos in this series.

Spirit of Spring Landscapes

As the snow quickly receded from the spring landscape this week, I strove to capture the essence of the season in photographs.

Dark Forest


Abstract Landscape 403-044


Spring Thaw


Before the Greening


White Woods

These photos were captured March 27th 2012 in Buena Vista Park in Edmonton using a neutral density filter, a 2-second exposure and various intentional camera motion during the exposure. These images are part of my collection of reference photos for an abstract painting series.

Northern Winter (Black and White, Part 2)

A continuation of an earlier post sharing some black and white landscape photos taken in January/February 2012 in the Edmonton river valley

Open Water and Ducks

Blue on Blue in Black and White

Stairs in the Valley

Grasses, Trees and a Cloud

Beautiful Trail

First Snow – Abstracted Landscape Photos

Today (2011 November 12) Edmonton had its first (and unusually late) snow of the season. While there are many thing about the snow I am not a fan of, I have been looking forward to applying  the camera-motion abstraction technique that I’ve been playing with in recent months, to the snowy landscape. Here are some of my first results:

Abstract Landscape 326-379

Abstract Landscape 325-383

Abstract Landscape 326-390

Abstract Landscape 326-397

Abstract Landscape 326-410

As with my previous photos in this style, the original intent was to give me reference images for paintings. However, so far I have not been able to create a painting that I like as much as or better than the photo (which is okay – for now).

My basic technique in this style is to use a neutral density filter to allow me to get a 2 second exposure. During the exposure I move/shake/vibrate the camera around vigorously. Post processing usually is required to increase contrast and color saturation.

Landscape Abstracts for Late Summer

As September 2011 arrived in Edmonton the landscape began a slow color transformation towards autumn hues. As I walked through the river valley with my camera, I captured some of these colors. In this series I have used camera motion to blur the distracting details and emphasize the colors as well as general forms and directions of structure or motion.

Abstract Landscape 283-222-2

Abstract Landscape 283-247

 Abstract 283-242

Abstract Landscape 283-252-3

Abstract Landscape 283-234

Red Sky Morning

2010 December 9 – some great color in Edmonton’s morning sky

The Light of Morning

Although  sunrise photos can be rather cliche, I have encountered and photographed a number of striking skies in recent weeks. Here area few of them:

Northern Morning

Split Sun

Behind the Screen

Breaking the Horizon


Savanna Morning



Land, Trees and Sky in Black and White

Following are some black and white photos taken in Dawson Park in Edmonton’s river valley on October 2nd 2010. The autumn colors have peaked  and while there is still enough color that it can be a focus on my photography, I find myself being drawn towards images in black and white. This day featured some wispy white clouds which looked dramatic against the deep blue (black) sky.

Guarding the Ridge

Under the Canopy

Dragon's Breath

Bones Against the Sky

A Lonely Post