About This Site
About the Artist
Almost from birth it seems, I was in love with the Canadian Shield, starting with our cottage in Muskoka, Ontario, Canada. As the years went by, I started spending more and more time in the backcountry, traveling by canoe in the open water season and snowshoes in the winter. As a youth I dreamed of being either a photographer or a bush pilot. I lucked out on the bush flying and worked in that field for quite a number of years. Through it all, and beyond, the camera has always been close by. It has been the one companion I could always rely on to enable me to communicate what it was, and still is about the natural world I loved so much. George Karbus, an excellent photographer of the natural world, said he has a need to communicate what he sees in the natural world. And so it goes with me. The photographers I have looked up to over the years have all expressed a deep passion for their genre. I have come to believe, as they do, that without that passion, one may get technically good photographs, but they will lack soul. The communication that is the responsibility of the photograph just won't be there. I look at a wilderness lake or the the peaks of the mountains in winter, or waves crashing on a remote beach of a Great Lake or ocean, and I find myself staring in absolute disbelief how this little planet is so well and completely put together and how everything has a place and a role to play in this world. The Earth is like a giant jig saw puzzle - lose a piece and you've got a hole in the puzzle. Lose too many pieces and the whole thing falls apart. The reason I take the photographs I do is to remind and communicate to people how not just beautiful the natural world is, but also how critical healthy ecosystems are to all life on Earth, including for us humans.
The ultimate reason for me to trip the shutter comes down to capturing the feeling of a cold, lonely, seemingly desolate part of the natural world; wild, primal and dominant over humans without question. A place where humans work within the system, not above it as they (seemingly) do in many parts of the world today. I used the word, "desolate" but it's not really. Even in the harshest, most remote regions of the world, life exists; evolved into something that is eminently suited to its environment. Regardless, it is the raw, natural power that really grabs my attention and without question makes me reach for my camera every time. It's a force that I cannot resist, regardless of the perils involved in getting there and back.
Of late, age and the stresses and strains of those canoe trips and flogging Beavers (the airplane, not the critter) around the boonies has caught up with me and I can't get into the backcountry so easily now. They say though, that when one door closes, another opens. While the door to the backcountry isn't completely closed to me yet, I have discovered a new, burgeoning passion in what is loosely called, "Canadiana". The meaning in that for me, is capturing parts of Canada that represent the best of what this country has to offer. This includes broad landscapes, cities and towns/villages that typify this great land. This is a bit of a new area for me so I'm still feeling my way around this part of my photographic journey. Nevertheless, I'm inviting you along for the ride, for better or worse.
No one learns anything in a vacuum, especially not photographers. While I say I'm mostly self taught, my learning has been greatly enhanced by a number of exceedingly talented photographers. If mimicry is the sincerest form of flattery, then my respect for the likes of Sherman Hines, Freeman Patterson, Mike Grandmaison, David DuChemin and Patrick DiFruscia is immeasurable! These Canadian photographers are the cream of the crop in my estimation. In trying to duplicate their work in mine, I have succeeded in developing my own style as a result, with my output being light years better for having studied their work until my eyes ached. Having my work accepted by some of the top pubishers in the country over the years is testament to learning from those greats. I also have great admiration and respect for Jay Maisel, John Shaw and Dave Black, all of whom have had a hand in my bettering my photography, albeit completely unknown to them.
In these pages I hope you will gain a sense of both the natural land that we came from and still need, and perhaps a bit of a feel for Canada as well. Certainly feel free to drop me a line through my Contact page if you're so inclined. Thanks for reading and welcome to my site.