Fine Art Gallery
In the digital age where everything is a transitory signal, there is more than ever an appreciation for finely crafted tangible prints. Fine Art Prints are images intended to evoke an emotion that continues to evolve through time. These prints often remain part of the fabric of one’s home for life, bearing witness to the many events that transpire while being viewed in all the conditions of light that cycle through the seasons and the different times each day.
The value of these Fine Art Prints arises from both the premium quality archival printing production with vibrant inks on acid-free 100% cotton rag paper, and also from the relative scarcity and artistic authenticity of each print. There will only be 25 of these prints created for each image which will be hand inspected, stamped, and signed by myself. The story behind the picture's subject and location will be included with each print. With the purchase of your print, you or a person of your designation, will receive a complimentary one year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine.
Pacific West Coast - Featured Print
As daylight was nearing its end, a group of us gathered around a warm fire on the white sand beach of Campania Island. Our hands warmed by cups of steaming hot stew, we reflected over the past several days of exploring the Great Bear Rainforest. At six million hectares in size (the size of Ireland) this magnificent region of Canada is the largest intact temperate rainforest in the world. The seed of its creation was planted by Cecil Paul (Wa’xaid) a Xenaksiala elder.
It was in the pristine northern region of the Kitlope, where Cecil’s grandmother tried to hide him from the residential school system. Eventually he was taken far away (Port Alberni) and the trauma of that experience set him on a difficult struggle for decades until at last he returned to his ancestral home where he experienced healing in these forests. His story is told through Rocky Mountain Books publication of the Magic Canoe.
Upon his return to the Kitlope he discovered survey markers for a logging road. This was the moment he resolved to protect his homeland and its precious ecology, launching an environmental movement over the next two decades. In 2016 the Great Bear Rainforest Land Use Order and Forest Management Act came into being. An Ecosystem-Based Management plan based in science as well as traditional local knowledge, that conserves 85% of the forests and 70% of old growth over time, while still ensuring opportunities for economic development and jobs for local First Nations.
Though the warmth of the fire was compelling, I couldn’t resist noticing the wonderfully warm light of sunset illuminating layers of distant clouds on the horizon of Hecate Strait. I set down my down my cup of stew and picked up my camera in exchange, and headed off across the beach toward a small river. When we embrace the world around us, without forcing an agenda, it is very freeing. I started to play with compositions of little subjects along the walk, rocks in a stream, a lone tree perched atop a pile of boulders. As the light dimmed I noticed the pronounced silhouette of a nearby uninhabited island contrasted against the colours of the distant sky.
The triangular shape of this island seemed to symbolize a classic ‘Pacific West Coast’ scene. As I focused my glance through the viewfinder of a telephoto lens, this composition immediately stood out. This is a natural occurrence of a scene resembling a print created by one of my favourite west coast artist’s - Roy Henry Vickers. As I released the shutter I noticed a small silhouette of an eagle swooping up to perch on a tree. It wasn’t until I was home though that I noticed there were eagles perched atop each of the trees on this island, seemingly appreciating each others company in the midst of a beautiful west coast sunset.
Canadian Rockies - Featured Print
Lake O'Hara Sunset
The sensitive alpine environment of the Lake O’Hara region of Yoho National Park BC, is one of the most beautiful Canadian Rockies hiking destinations in Canada. Surrounded by a network of hanging valleys that each contain glacial lakes of their own, there are numerous well maintained hiking trails connecting these jewel-blue alpine lakes accompanied by breathtaking vistas.
Some of the vistas in this region, such as the geometric reflections in Lake Oesa (2,270m) may seem familiar thanks to the paintings created by J.E.H. MacDonald, member of the Group of Seven. He first experienced the scenery here in 1924 and this became a favourite destination for him despite the arduous journey of trekking in with his painting supplies via a mule and row boat. He returned here for several consecutive years until his health failed him. In her book The Lake O’Hara Art of J.E.H. MacDonald and Hiker’s Guide, author Lisa Christensen traces the footsteps of MacDonald to the very spots from which he painted, even discovering remnants of paint on trees used perhaps to clean a brush.
This jewel of the Rockies has become an annual family trip for me, as it is only a little over two hours away from our home in Calgary. Parks Canada restricts access to this region to provide high-quality and meaningful experiences for visitors and to maintain Lake O’Hara’s unique and fragile alpine environment.
Canadian Arctic - Featured Print
Tallurutiup Imanga Sunset
One of the most striking features of Arctic Light is the oblique angle of the sun to the horizon, creating magnificently drawn out sunsets. This contrasting warm and cold scene lingered for well over an hour, as the sun set across Lancaster Sound, reflecting on a large solitary iceberg on its journey in the ocean current.
This body of water in the Qikiqtaaluk Region of Nunavut, forms the eastern entrance to the Northwest Passage. It also falls within the newly created Tallurutiup Imanga National Marine Conservation Area, a boundary protecting 109,000 square kilometres, making it the largest marine conservation area in Canada. The goal of this conservation area is to work with local Inuit to conserve the rich biodiversity of Lancaster Sound and the adjacent waterways. The presence of Polynyas in its waters, small pockets of open water that provide year round refuge for Arctic marine and bird species during the cold winter months, make this region ecologically critical.
This print is a digital painting based upon my original photograph, using a digital tablet and pen. Nature supplied the palette of various hues which the camera sensor captured, while I provided their hand rendering into shapes.
Canadian East Coast - Featured Print
Living On The Edge
Upon approaching the Narrows from the sea, the only entrance to St John’s harbour, it is nearly impossible to see the opening between the towering seaside cliffs that conceal a city lined in colourful homes cascading down steep streets leading to the bay. Aptly named, ‘The Narrows’ is only 61 metres wide at its narrowest and 11 metres deep at its shallowest. Along the entrance, from as early as the 1770’s, is Chain Rock from which a chain was dragged 174 meters across the channel each night to Pancake Rock on the Fort Amherst side, to block the entrance of enemy ships.
Perched along this channel underneath the towering rocks of Signal Hill, from where the first trans-Atlantic wireless signal was received in 1901, are the homes of The Battery. This is North America’s oldest year round European settlement, and most Easterly community, formed in the 1600s as fishing thrived off the nearby Grand Banks.
It is rewarding to extrapolate from literal photographic images such as in this picture where I have stitched together several images taken while sailing past The Battery one early morning. The panoramic image was then converted to black and white and completely whited out using a digital paintbrush with Corel Paintshop software. I then gradually drew back the underlying original image through the haze and reintroduced the colours of the dwellings, where I want our eyes to be drawn.