The Weekly Photo – January 31, 2011
I just returned from a winter photo tour in the Canadian Rockies. The conditions this year ran the gamut of extremes. The first day we had a powerful and warm Chinook roll through the region creating a vortex of winds that slapped us hard while out on the ice of Abraham Lake. Have you ever seen a 40lb camera bag skirt across the ice at 30kms an hour? The high temperatures of +10 Celsius literally melted the ice beneath our feet. We were soon walking on a layer of water above the ice. I felt like Jesus minus the sandals… and the super-powers. The crystal clear ice of Abraham Lake soon clouded to milky white in the high temperatures. And then the rain came (in January!). After the rain, big snowfalls followed and then the temperatures plunged to a low of -24 degrees under crisp blue skies. We had almost every type of weather imaginable. But everyone managed to pull off some really nice photos. I just downloaded my take and plan to edit them over the next day or two. More to come.
For now, here is an image taken in September of the serac of the Athabasca Glacier in Jasper National Park. It’s a 4 km hike on the glacier to get to this ice-fall area. You’ll need to hire a guide to take you out on the glacier and I highly recommend Ice Walks for this service. For this image I used the shift feature on my Canon 17mm tilt-shift lens to make a vertical panoramic image of the ice. With the camera in vertical orientation I shifted the lens down to get the foreground ice-hole. Then I shifted the lens up to get the distant background. The result of merging the two-shifted photos is a 2:1 pano. In September the ice has had all summer to melt and it looks grungy and old.
Speaking of photography field techniques, tomorrow (Feb 1, 2011), my six-week on-line course, The Essentials of Digital Landscape Photography: Field Techniques starts. As the title suggests I give detailed lessons and image critiques relating to field techniques. For more information click here.
And for those photographers who wish to improve the ability to ‘see’, I highly recommend Samantha’s course which also starts tomorrow on Learning to “Speak” the Language of Visual Expression.