News & Articles 2013 - 2015

Odds and Ends

Dated archives. If it is past its best before date in 2013 to 2015 and it doesn't fit anywhere else on the site, it probably is on this page.

Merry Christmas 2015

virtual Christmas Card 2015
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Christmas 2015 Greetings and Best Wishes to All

The image I used on my Christmas card this year is an edited version of a photo that is included in my Aurora Extraordinaire gallery. I added the dog team from a photo I had taken in bright sunshine at the start of the 2011 Yukon Quest race, using Photoshop to massage it to look as natural as possible in this scene under the dim green illumination of the northern lights. A version of this image earned an honourable mention in the 2015 North Shore Challenge, an annual photo competition run under the auspices of the Canadian Association for Photographic Art. For the version on this card, I made some warp adjustments to slightly reduce the fish-eye effect of my widest angle lens, which I needed to capture the expanse of sky that was filled by the auroral pattern.
Pentax K-5, Rokinon 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye, 23 sec @ f/3.5, ISO 800

Merry Christmas 2014

virtual Christmas Card 2014
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My 2014 Christmas Card to You

Lens zoomed during exposure of Christmas tree.
Pentax K-5, Tamron AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD, 1.5 sec @ f/8

March 23, 2014 - Whitehorse Photography Club Print Exhibition

UPDATE:  The show was a great success, viewed by hundreds and the subject of many favourable comments.

If you are in Whitehorse this April, please visit our print exhibition at the Yukon Arts Centre. I will have a couple of pieces in the show. If you can make it to the opening reception on the 4th, some of us will be there to meet and talk with you. By the way, contrary to what the poster below says, we have had a few print shows in the past; I participated in 3 of these. But those were many years ago in the pre-digital era and, until now, the present generation of the club has concentrated its efforts for the public on presenting workshops. There will be another one of those this autumn.

"Through Our Lenses" WPC Print Exhibition poster

For more information about the club including online member galleries, go to

March 2, 2014 - New Gallery: Aurora Extraordinaire


Aurora - February 19, 2014 22:48:35

The Northern Lights were active in February of 2014. Especially on the 18th and 19th nights of the month they put on an impressive show over my area in the southern Yukon, the likes of which I don’t believe I had ever seen before and certainly had not photographed previously. The hours I spent capturing this display yielded about 100 images and most of them are satisfying. In fact, overall I am delighted with the images almost as much as I was thrilled by the spectacle of the auroral event itself.

And so it was that I feel compelled to present this gallery and show my record of this awe inspiring natural phenomenon to others who were not privileged to experience it first hand. To be clear, the photos cannot reproduce the experience of being there.  This highly active aurora was often full of rapid motion and undulating brightness and that was a big component of the spell it cast. Sequential series of images might give some sense of that movement but it is a very abstract interpretation. The main effect is undesirable blurring of the light patterns during the necessarily long exposures. But with those long exposures, the camera does record things that are too dim to be visible to the human eye. I have further boosted the tonal relationships with adjustments in Adobe Lightroom. The result is still a credible representation of what I saw at the time of exposure, but a somewhat enhanced representation that reflects my photographer’s vision of it.

Currently this gallery only contains photos from the two nights I have described here. I anticipate that I may evolve it into a more general gallery of my Aurora Borealis photography, adding some of my better past and future images of the subject and perhaps removing some of the more redundant existing ones.

View the Aurora Extraordinare gallery here.

Christmas 2013 - My Christmas Card for You

virtual Christmas Card 2013
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My 2013 Christmas Card

The caption on the card image was intended for family and friends with whom I once used to routinely spend time at Christmastime. Distance put an end to that, in most cases many years or even decades ago. I have sent printed cards to them, but with this virtual version I extend my seasonal best wishes to all of my visitors to this site.
(Composite of exposures made with ambient light only and with flash.)
Pentax K-5, Tamron AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD @ 17mm, f/8

August 8, 2013 - Whitehorse Photography Club 2013 Fall Workshop Series

UPDATE:  The Enthusiast workshop with Dave Brosha was postponed and re-scheduled for December 6th to 8th. It proceeded on those dates and lived up to its billing, both enlightening and inspiring us. The Beginners and Advanced workshops both were completed successfully on their scheduled dates and received many satisfied comments from attendees.

WPC Fall Workshop Series

For more information and registration forms, go to

March 17, 2013 - New Gallery in New Format

I have just posted a new gallery,  Road Trip 2012 , which is a collection of photographs I took during a motorcycle trip to the Okanagan last August. Yes, it has been a long time coming ... and indeed, a long time since I last added any gallery to this site.
Alaska Highway Bison

Alaska Highway Bison

My previous galleries have been Flash based and I wanted to move away from that format given its widely maligned performance and security issues and declining ubiquity of support. But I was insistent about not giving up the functionality my flash galleries provided and especially about being able to still integrate galleries into this site such that they look and feel like they belong and retain full navigation. JavaScript was the fairly obvious way to go but I had difficulty identifying a specific application that would meet my requirements. After trying and abandoning a couple, I have settled on jAlbum with the Matrix skin.

Matrix is rich in features, including display of select EXIF data and linking to Google Maps from geotagged images, and it allows considerable customization of layout and style. Still, even after I had figured out how to harness the myriad options within the interface, I had to code many inline styles and make a few edits to output files to get close to what I really wanted. I also had to design a new, flexible, wide page with top navigation to contain the gallery and suitably integrate it into this website. The result is not perfect but I am generally satisfied with it.

The gallery is embedded in its web page using an iframe, which creates a couple of issues though it is only really a problem if you are viewing on a small, low resolution display. In that case, when images need to be reduced in size to fit within the browser viewport, the iframe prevents proper resizing. If you run the browser in full screen mode or at least with all toolbars hidden, a minimum screen height of 764 pixels should be adequate if a bit clunky to use. In case this is not satisfactory or the gallery is not displaying properly in the iframe for whatever reason, I have included a link at the bottom of the page which will open the bare gallery outside of the container page. Then resizing should occur properly, though a limitation of the matrix skin with my placement of captions below the photos may still result in unsatisfactory display of vertical images.

Now that I have produced this gallery it should serve as a template for me to much more easily and quickly create other new galleries. Stay tuned.

New Galleries Main Page too!

With the addition of a new gallery, I have also rebuilt the main  Galleries  page that indexes all the galleries. This page had been a remnant of antiquated html code without css styles and structured around my original ill-advised choice of html frames architecture. I have employed the flexible, wide page format I designed for the new gallery for this page also.