27 December

The oopoomoo team – 2013 in Review – Catherine Byram

For this year instead of looking for my ‘best’ pictures of 2013, I thought I would share a themed body of work. That seems like an oopoomoo thing to do. After all oopoomoo really promotes projects and self assignments as a way to grow as an artist. So here I present the theme ‘prairies’ using images taken from 2013. Happy New Year everyone!

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Trochu, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Trochu, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Rowley, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – near Three Hills, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Oberon, Manitoba

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Arizona, Manitoba

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Rowley, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Rowley, Alberta

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Oberon, Manitoba

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram – Rhein, Saskatchewan

26 December

The oopoomoo Team – 2013 in Review – John Marriott

We asked oopoomoo team member John Marriott to highlight 2013 for us. Here is what he said:

When Sam and Darwin asked me to put together a Top Ten of my 2013 images, I immediately panicked and wondered if I’d actually even edited 10 images from 2013 yet.  Thankfully, I’d edited at least a few of my faves from the year, so here you go, a taste of 2013!

The year was highlighted by two different amazing lynx encounters in Banff and Jasper national parks, but also featured a trip to Yellowstone and a host of photo tours across Canada to super exotic locales like Spuzzum and Rockglen (I’m kidding, the photo tours actually did go to some pretty cool places, like the Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary and the Great Bear Rainforest).

And of course the year 2013 would not be complete without me mentioning my favourite part of the year, when my wife and I lived the thrilling life of wannabe adventurers and evacuated our house in Canmore to avoid a small amount of water rushing by our house. Two months living in a hotel is a very, very long time, so needless to say, I’m ready to say a hearty goodbye to the year that was, and welcome 2014 in with a giant hug.

Northern Lights over Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada Bighorn sheep ram, Jasper National Park Grizzly bear family, British Columbia, Canada Two bald eagles perch high atop a spruce in the Khutzeymateen, BC, Canada Grizzly bear with a sockeye salmon _S5C9890-large Kitten Wanderer Two of a Kind lyx0054_wildlynx-large

We say: great collection, John! If you like John’s work and want to know where he finds his animal subjects in the Canadian Rockies be sure to pick up a copy of his fantastic eBook: The Icefields Parkway Wildlife Edition.


9 December

Shortcuts, Shortcuts, Shortcuts… Image Processing for Lazy Photographers

Sam and I have been hard at work the last couple of weeks putting the final touches on a new eBook called Sam and Darwin’s 7 Quick and Dirty Processing Shortcuts for Lazy Photographers. Right now Stephen is putting spit and polish on the eBook design. So stay tuned for this eBook coming up soon!

We developed this eBook in response to numerous requests on how we process our photos. We’ve always been hesitant to share our methods… not because they are secret or innovative but because we do things all ‘wrong’. Wrong? Well, let’s just say that the Kelbys and Lyndas out there teaching image processing would be appalled by our unconventional workflow (and we would probably fail their courses)!

But (and here is the important point) our method works just fine for us, delivering results every time with little fuss. And we get our images processed fast. So we thought we would share what we do in the hopes that some of our shortcuts might help you shorten your time processing on the computer so that you can have more time for creative photography in the field.

In the meantime to help you save even more time be sure to check out our article: Image Storage and Retrieval: Are You a Cherry Picker or a Bean Counter?

Are you ready to be a lazy photographer?

©Samantha Chrysanthou - The raw image captured in camera with minimal processing.

©Samantha Chrysanthou – The raw image captured in camera with minimal processing.

©Samantha Chrysanthou - The final image processed using our quick and dirty shortcuts

©Samantha Chrysanthou – The final image of Dinosaur Provincial Park processed using our quick and dirty shortcuts



18 September

Badlands, Buicks and Old Buildings: The Prairie Workshop 2013 Results

This year’s Badlands, Buicks and Old Buildings: The Prairie Workshop was a roaring fun event with our participants coming back with awesome and surprising images! Below are each person’s results along with some thoughts on the making of the image. For those interested in the 2014, event click here for more information.

Susan Cooper Parker

©Susan Parker

©Susan Parker

A salvage yard emits a certain type of melancholy. Not only do you sense the physical waste of  industrialization – –  one can imagine some dreadful wrecks associated with the leftover scraps. These jewel tones of shattered glass laying on the dashboard could have left a hole in someone’s heart.

Dale Sorensen

©Dale Sorensen

©Dale Sorensen

I keep coming back to this photo when I look at my BBB 2013 photos, because it is just such a majestic shot of a stately and robust old work truck. The colours are attractive, with the rusted paint, green grass, blue sky and field in the background. The headlights, the chrome “necklace” around the front, and my favourite is the mirror. It just proudly sticks right out there, and isn’t symmetrically offset by one on the other side. Even the dilapidated wood box shows up a little. It is so classic old farm Alberta.

Andy Stanislav

©Andy Stanislav

©Andy Stanislav

So this flowering bulb stood out among the native grasses and the fields, it was begging to be photographed. I carefully took a position over top and tried not to disturb the bulb as it looked like it may fly apart with the slightest touch, so I didn’t dare touch it. I shot this with a 100mm macro lens and took several images, each image a little bit deeper into the bulb as shown here. In the last image, though slightly out of focus due to the gentle breeze, I noticed a small green grasshopper was staring back into the lens !!

Dave Williamson

©Dave Williamson

©Dave Williamson

I came to the workshop to improve my vision and techniques for landscape photography. I was prepared with my tripod, filters, cable release and level bubble. As I was set up and geared up to photograph the cool old falling down barn, I was also half watching one of the horses that was nearby. I noticed that it was purposefully walking from yellow flower to yellow flower to eat them. Camera comes off tripod, cable release disconnected, ND grad pulled and level bubble not necessary. I pre-focused on the next flower victim and when the horse came into the frame I got the shot. I like the simplicity of it. The horse eating yellow flowers.

Terry Jackson

©Terry Jackson

©Terry Jackson

For three days, we were all captivated in the subject of photography, from short informative seminars and sun rise picturesque opportunities, to prairie sunsets with windmill backdrops, captivating light painting and of course non-stop photography talk from equipment to technique all filling our bottomless toolbox of knowledge.  I really liked this ‘retired truck’ at the auto wrecker’s yard.

Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram

©Catherine Byram

It was a very hot afternoon on the Central Alberta prairie, spent walking up and down rows of  ‘seen better days’  vehicles at an auto wrecker’s. I decided to stretch out on the grass between two of the neatly arranged rows. My eyes were drawn to an off white station wagon. Hey, that’s not  just a station wagon – it’s a hearse! Oh, I bet if it could talk it would have lots of stories to tell.  Other vehicles in the compound could perhaps talk about trips to a family farm, the big city zoo, grandma’s house or exciting shopping trips.  The hearse would  have no such stories. My goal when I made this photo was to have viewers think solemnly about the many trips this vehicle made down busy city streets or quiet rural roads to the local cemetery. Maybe it would evoke memories within the viewer. I don’t want to make viewers sad, just contemplative . I have several different shots of the vehicle but I like this one the best because I could imagine people standing on the street watching the hearse go by and seeing through this window, wondering who was going to their resting place. I set the camera on a tripod and composed the picture so that the grasses were not merging with the curtains.  In order to keep my reflection out of the window I had to use the cable release. The photo was taken as a colour jpeg. I changed it to black and white because it reflects the mood I am trying to portray.

Ed Byram

©Ed Byram

©Ed Byram

I am a very novice photographer and have become interested in the way light can influence an image. After an evening of painting several objects and small buildings with light, I enlisted the help of my wife Catherine and friend Darwin to assist me in the  light painting of a historic Alberta ranch home. Catherine shone a light on the house allowing me to focus properly. I put the camera on bulb setting and had Catherine and Darwin run around and paint the house with their flashlights. With their help I obtained my ‘best painting with light’  image.

Brian Hayward

©Brian Hayward

©Brian Hayward

Being able to immerse the dark cabin in a sweep of light from a flashlight helped to create this moody historic scene.

Alain Efstratiou

©Alain Efstratiou

©Alain Efstratiou

I certainly enjoyed my time in Alberta. Hard to pick only one picture but this one from Dry Island Buffalo Jump was a personal favorite.

8 August

Waterton Lakes National Park – The Grand Landscape

Samantha, Ian McGillvrey and I went on a 5-day backpacking trip to Waterton Lakes National Park in late July. The intent of the trip for me and Sam was primarily a nature hike, although I did manage to get in some shots at sunrise and sunset most days. Here Ian and I present our favorite three big grand landscapes at sunrise. Yes, these are big light, wide lens views of the the park’s landscapes! Sam took the point ‘n shoot camera and no tripod, so she didn’t partake in these early morning low light sessions. To see all three of our ‘alternative’ views of Waterton, stay tuned for the next post. And the video at the end shows a fast 12-minute sunrise at Lone Lake (a frame every 30 seconds) – to see the video larger click here.

©Ian McGillvrey -  Maskinonge Panorama - click to see larger

©Ian McGillvrey – Maskinonge Panorama – click to see larger

©Darwin Wiggett - Vimy Peak from Maskinonge Lake

©Darwin Wiggett – Vimy Peak from Maskinonge Lake

©Ian McGillvrey - Lower Twin Lake at sunrise

©Ian McGillvrey – Lower Twin Lake at sunrise

©Darwin Wiggett - Looking towards Lower Twin Lake during a foggy sunrise

©Darwin Wiggett – Looking towards Lower Twin Lake during a foggy sunrise 

©Ian McGillvrey - Lone Lake sunrise

©Ian McGillvrey – Lone Lake sunrise

©Darwin Wiggett - First light at Lone Lake

©Darwin Wiggett – First light at Lone Lake

12 July

Foggy Film Fridays – A Walk with Brando the Dog and Einstein the Holga

Last Friday, I woke to a foggy morning in our hometown of Cochrane. I grabbed Einstein our ‘sharp’ Holga film camera and Brando our faithful dog and went for a walk in the fog. I shot 10 frames of fog on Ilford XP-2 B+W film and ended up with five images I liked. Holgas and film work great in moody light and I love that what you shoot in the camera is what you get – if you mess up there is no fixing the shot later. And you can never predict the results; there is the element of surprise that is intriguing. I also like the look of the images I get from the Holga… forget Instagram or software plug-ins, this is the real deal!  😉

©Darwin Wiggett - The Pathway to the Bow River in Cochrane

©Darwin Wiggett – The Pathway to the Bow River in Cochrane

©Darwin Wiggett - The Cochrane Waste Treatment Pond (the 'poo' pond)

©Darwin Wiggett – The Cochrane Waste Treatment Pond (the ‘poo’ pond)

©Darwin Wiggett - The Bow River and Jumping Pond Creek

©Darwin Wiggett – The Bow River and Jumping Pond Creek

©Darwin Wiggett - Mitford Ponds

©Darwin Wiggett – Mitford Ponds

©Darwin Wiggett - Mitford Ponds

©Darwin Wiggett – Mitford Ponds

16 February

Chain Mail Chicken in the Hands of Chris Manderson

Chain Mail Chicken’s first adventure in his journey around the world was with Chris Manderson a participant in last week’s Winter Photo Tour. Chris had Chain Mail with him for a few days. Below is their story as told by Chris:

Here are my chicken photos.  I wanted to send you a bit of a motivational narrative behind the photos, so you’re getting a few more than asked for, to support my train of thought. I was also going to vehemently deny the ‘mean’ and ‘cruel’ characterizations of my treatment of the chicken in your blog, but then decided I’d own that too. Chain Mail Chicken got me thinking about Canadian History in a strange way too… My first motivation was to consider the environment in which we were shooting – the Canadian Rockies in winter, and in particular Abraham Lake…that lead me to thinking ice…and in particular chickens in ice. So, with that in mind, I decided to encase the hapless Chain Mail Chicken (CMC) in a block of ice – thinking of it encased in ice and reflecting the morning light. As it turned out, encasing Chain Mail Chicken in ice was a bit more of a challenge than I’d anticipated, given that it wasn’t actually that cold. So, after two days of trying to get a clear block of ice, what I ended up with was another touchstone of Canadian history (and doomed explorers)…namely John Torrington and the Franklin Expedition
(Interestingly, I learned that some people call poor Mr. Torrington a Canadian Mummy…had I known that earlier, there would have been an entire tableau involving gauze and a rubber chicken…)
So, instead of CMC encased in a block of ice, I ended up with photos of the chicken emerging from the ice of the Lake; frost-covered and not reflecting the morning light in the least.
©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

Back on Highway 11, the obvious scenario emerged – why did the Chain Mail Chicken cross the road?

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

And in fact, did CMC make it across? Some think this is an existential question: http://www.toomanymornings.com/?p=1075. I just think it makes for an interesting picture, so I spent the rest of my time with CMC exploring that theme instead, with a few photos along the Icefields Parkway:
©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

And finally safe and warm in Darwin’s pocket!

©Chris Manderson

©Chris Manderson

14 February

Interview with Photographer David duChemin

Happy Valentine’s Day, everybody! We thought we’d share the love with you (I know, groooaan) by having someone else speak on our blog. So we asked David duChemin, a respected world and humanitarian photographer (and a cool guy in his own right) to be our Valentine today and answer some questions. David dishes on his fave travel gear, the tough work/life balance in his job, and leveraging social media to build your business. David is also our guest speaker at the Persistent Vision photography event March 15-17, so if you would like to meet him, catch him in Alberta between his journeys around the world! There’s still space in the Saturday portion of this exciting weekend photography event.


Antarctica – ©David duChemin

Personal Stuff

oopoomoo: For our friends who haven’t met you yet, how long have you been a professional photographer? What is your area of interest in photography?

David: I’ve been a photographer since I was 14, but it’s been my vocation for about 8 years. I’m most interested in landscapes, and the people that live on the land. Commercially I’ve been serving the humanitarian community for 8 years, with clients like World Vision, Save The Children, and The Boma Project.

oopoomoo: How did you learn the art and craft of photography?

David: I’m self-taught, by which I mean I directed my own learning and didn’t go to school, but I think none of us are really self-taught. We learn from all kinds of sources. In my case it was largely distant influences like Ansel Adams, Yousef Karsh, and Canada’s own Freeman Patterson who was an early hero of mine.

oopoomoo: As a world and humanitarian photographer, you must be on the road a great deal. How do you balance the demands of travel photography with running the everyday components of your business and maintaining friendships and relationships?

David: I’m lousy at balance. But then I also believe you need to play to your strengths, so I’ve got a manager that does what he’s good at, allowing me to do what I’m good at. My life/work/play are all the same thing, so there’s no compartments. I stay in touch with friends by email and Skype and I’ve got a Satellite phone for more remote locations. But I also find a way to include my loved ones in what I do. I take my partner, Cynthia, around the world with me when I can. My manager, Corwin, is also my best friend, and I travel with him when I can.

oopoomoo: Do you have a particular fondness for any one country or culture that you’ve experienced?

David: It’s so hard. That’s like asking my to pick a favourite child. I adore eastern Africa. I love India too. But then I need the open spaces of places like Iceland or Antarctica for a bit too. This is an astonishing world, full of beauty. I want to see it all. But I also know I can’t see it all, so these days I tend to go back to places I love, at least a few times, so I can experience it as deeply as time allows. I’d rather experience 50 amazing places a little deeper than 300 far too quickly.

oopoomoo: In 2006, you began photography “as a vocation” (in your own words), leaving behind a successful 12-year career as a comedian. At first glance ‘comic’ and ‘photographer’ seem quite different professions. How did being a comic prepare you for life as a professional photographer?

David: To be a good comic you need to understand why people laugh, and how to communicate in such a way that they do. It’s a very intentional communication, and I think the same is true of photography. It also taught me a lot about marketing. If you think marketing yourself as a photographer is hard, try being a comedian! Both are creative fields and I think it takes some tenacity to live solely on your creativity; comedy taught me that.

oopoomoo: Why is photography a vocation for you? How has your passion for photography helped and hindered pursuit of your photographic goals?

David: The word vocation literally means “calling” and that’s how it feels to me. It’s not just my work but my life’s work. It’s a medium that makes sense to me, that feels right, and that – most of the time – gives me a feeling I call my “this is what I was created to do” feeling. I don’t think passion for something can hinder the pursuit of it. That passion nearly took me into professional photography far too early, and I think that would have killed my love for it. My time in comedy was important in helping me figure out what I wanted to do with my photography.

herding goats in Kenya

Kenya – ©David duChemin

Photography Stuff

oopoomoo: We have to ask…what is your favourite photo gear to take when traveling to foreign destinations?

David: If I could only take one kit it would be my Nikon D3s and 16-35/4.0 lens. I have bags and bags of other stuff, but this camera and lens just seems to do it for me. That said I’ve recently been playing with a compact Sony RX100 and I love it. I’m also picking up a Fuji X-Pro1 to take to Italy with me this year. One body, 2 lenses. I can’t wait.

oopoomoo: You’ve put forth the message that “gear is good, vision is better”. Can you explain what you mean by this? Can we ever love our gear too much?

David: I think it’s a question of what you want to do. If you’re a camera collector, then collect and love all the cameras you want. If you’re an optics geek, then knock yourself out with charts and tests. But I just want to make photographs. And if it’s photographs you want to make, then the camera is just a means to an end. Much more important is your vision, or intent. Photography is a visual language and for that to mean anything, the photographer’s got to have something to say.

oopoomoo: Are you a natural at approaching people to make a portrait, or is this a challenging area for you? What approach would you advocate for other aspiring world photographers in terms of photographing people?

David: I’m an introvert. I hate approaching people for a portrait. I fear the rejection, just like most people that aren’t either extroverts or sociopaths. But I fear coming home without the photographs more. And I think fear is a good compass. Often the things we’re most afraid of are the things we should be doing, not avoiding, because we tend to fear going out of our comfort zone and nothing good happens creatively in that comfort zone. The magic happens outside that zone.

oopoomoo: Who are some photographers who have either inspired you in the past or who you follow today?

David: At the top of my list is Elliott Erwitt. I adore his wit and timing. He’s like Henri Cartier Bresson, but with a sense of humour. The last photo books I bought were from Erwitt, Andrew Zuckerman, and Bruce Percy, whose landscapes inspire me tremendously. Lesser known, I recently discovered an Indonesian photographer named Hengki Koentjoro, and his work is really beautiful.

oopoomoo: Looking into the future, and the impact of technology on photography, how do you think photography will look in the future? Do you think the camera is going to be subsumed into another, multi-purpose communication device?

David: I’m not sure. But I’m really less concerned about what the tool we make photographs with looks like, and more concerned that the technology serves us in making photographs themselves. I think constraints are important to creativity, so I won’t be thrilled with advances that just layer feature on top of feature. I don’t use half of the stuff my cameras can currently do. I go on workshops all the time and a student will say, “Hey, do you use the such-and-such on that camera” and I’ll have to confess I had no idea it could even do that. Willful ignorance allows me to focus on what I love instead of the relentless learning curve, which tends to be about technology, not making photographs.

travel jeep and campfire

Jeeping Weekend – ©David duChemin

Business Stuff

oopoomoo: In your book, VisionMongers, you describe a somewhat meteoric rise from when you first set out to be a full-time pro and publication of that book. To what would you credit your success in a relatively short period of time?

David: I think “meteoric” might be pushing it a little, but it was fast. I think it was going into it very intentionally, with a solid background in running and marketing a creative business. In show-business they say it’s 10% show and 90% business. I think in photography, to do it as working professional, you have to be 100% show and 100% business. Comedy also gave me an understanding of what it means to leverage your personality, and I’d already been blogging for several years, so my ability to write, and engage with an audience was already honed to some degree. All of that helps.

oopoomoo: When you first started out, how did you know it was time to take the plunge to full-time?

David: In my case I really had no choice. I was going bankrupt, and was at the bottom of the barrel. The bankruptcy was an accumulation of a lot of personal mistakes that finally caught up with me. So it was a good time to switch gears.  Like I said, I was already making a living, day by day, in the arts, this was just a shift from one art to another. I gave myself a year to transition, and that was all it took. Had it not gone as planned, I guess it would have taken longer.

oopoomoo: Also in VisionMongers, you give an honest assessment of the difficulties in making a living (as opposed to a life) in photography. What do you think are three, big challenges facing newcomers today, and how can they overcome them?

David: I think the challenges are the same as they’ve always been, just a little more obvious. In the past there was a sense of being a professional tradesperson and competing against peers. Now there’s a flood of people out there who feel they know how to use a camera and are glutting the marketplace with mediocrity. But there’s always been mediocrity. And there’s always been people willing to pay for excellence. Instead of looking at the challenges, I prefer to look at the opportunities and with the rise of social media and self-publishing, the opportunities to create and share our work have never been better.

oopoomoo: You have been blogging since 2005, are active on Twitter and leverage Facebook. What are your thoughts on social media as a marketing tool for photographers today? Is it essential?

David: I think if you’re not actively building and serving an audience through social media, blogs, etc., you’re insane. What a missed opportunity to share your work with the world. Sure, not everyone can write. Do a video blog. An audio blog. Do a photo-blog. But build an audience. That’s why most of us do this – to create and share. And if you want to share, this is the biggest, cheapest, most accessible way to do with a global audience. It doesn’t mean you have to do it all. I do my blog, and I interact on Facebook and Twitter. I’ve tried Google+ and I might try it again, but you can’t do it all. Or at least, I can’t do it all. Not if I also want to do it well and meaningfully engage on some level.

oopoomoo: Thanks, David!


Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara – ©David duChemin

9 February

15 Favorites from the November 2012 Fire and Ice Canadian Rockies Photos Tour

In keeping with our ‘let them age’ photo workflow, I finally present my 15 favorite images from the November 2012 Fire and Ice Photo Tour. In 2012 we had two out of four mornings with fire and we had a lot of ice and snow because the season started off with a good long cold spell. Who knows what 2013 will bring? For those interested seeing the participant photos from this tour please see this link and scroll down a bit to see everyone’s photos!

If you want to explore the Canadian Rockies in the winter on your own, we have three eBooks specific to winter that cover the area we play around in:

Kootenay Plains and Abraham Lake Winter Edition

The Icefields Parkway Winter Edition

Winter in the Canadian Rockies

©Darwin Wiggett - Winter Fireweed

©Darwin Wiggett – Winter Fireweed

North Saskatchewan River at Rampart Ponds, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – North Saskatchewan River at Rampart Ponds, Banff National Park, Alberta

North Saskatchewan River at Rampart Ponds, Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – North Saskatchewan River at Rampart Ponds, Banff National Park, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – North Saskatchewan River at Rampart Ponds, Banff National Park, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Nigel Pass view, Banff National Park, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Wounded Sheep at Tangle Falls, Jasper National Park, Alberta

Tangle Falls, Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – Tangle Falls, Jasper National Park, Alberta

Sunwapta River above Sunwapta Falls, Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – Sunwapta River above Sunwapta Falls, Jasper National Park, Alberta

Jasper National Park, ALberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – Frosted Hills, Jasper National Park, Alberta

Pobokatan Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada

©Darwin Wiggett – Pobokatan Creek, Jasper National Park, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Abraham Lake at Hoodoo Bay, Kootenay Plains, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Abraham Lake Ice Detail, Kootenay Plains, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Abraham Lake at Hoodoo Bay, Kootenay Plains, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Ice and snow on the North Saskatchewan River, Banff National Park, Alberta


©Darwin Wiggett – Siffleur Falls Trail Suspension Bridge, Kootenay Plains, Alberta

7 February

Software Tools for Photographers

What are your favourite apps?

I’m not sure how I ever lived without GPS. I have it in my car, I have it in my camera, and I have it on my phone. At any given time, I can open up a map and get an aerial view of my location and find my way around. It’s a very exciting time for geography related tools which has direct benefits for photographers.

There are an unlimited number of apps available for photographers but one of the lesser known options in the classic desktop app Google Earth, is light simulation. Sure, there are apps like The Photographer’s Ephemeris that can provide fantastic data for where and when the sun will rise and set – but what if you could actually see it? Google Earth can do that for many locations.

This is most useful for large landscapes and would have little use in the prairies.

Mount Rundle from the Vermillion Lakes side, Banff

Mount Rundle from the Vermillion Lakes late on a February afternoon just before sunset.