Symbolism in Photos

aurora, aurora borealis, northern lights, winter, night, night sky, Dan Jurak,

Wow! What a night it was last night.

The aurora borealis put on a dazzling light show for all to see, that is if you were up late enough.

I was keeping an eye on the aurora watch website all day yesterday waiting for a spike in auroral activity. At 10:30 pm the graph jumped and so did I, into the Rav, camera gear and a thermos filled with hot cappuccino. I didn’t get to bed until 4:00 am. Boy did time fly.

Even though I got to bed late my internal alarm clock still woke me up a couple of hours later at 6:00 am. Sheesh! I forced myself to try and sleep until 8:30. Nights like this are few and far between. The aurora have to be strong and the skies clear for it to come together.

At times I stood at the roadside in awe. The northern lights were skipping across the sky like a stone across a pond. The speed at which they crossed the sky was incredible. Occasionally a hint of red or magenta would show up.

There are so many more photos to process. Many, many more.

Today in Canada is Remembrance Day. It’s a day when Canada as a nation remembers its fallen heroes, those who sacrificed themselves for their country.

For me November 11 has had special significance. 51 years ago today my father died. I was only seven years old and in grade two. How well can you know your father when you are only seven? I have some memories but not many. One of his hobbies was photography. I remember dad on a Saturday night in the bathroom converted to a temporary black and white darkroom and the smell of fixer, developer and stop bath. Prints were hung to try across the bath tub. Memories. A few.

I guess that it’s not much of a coincidence that I fell into photography for a major part of my life.

Last night felt special, like my father was with me while I was shooting aurora and when I saw this picture, it reminded me of him looking down on me. Hi Dad.

BTW, he was also named Dan Jurak

I’m not much on symbolism in photos but for this one, yeah.

Happy shooting,


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~ by Dan Jurak on November 11, 2013.

11 Responses to “Symbolism in Photos”

  1. An incredible photo and a touching story about your father. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thank you Terry. If you’re in the northern hemisphere there is a good chance for a repeat of the aurora again tonight.

  3. Thanks for the head’s up, Dan. Unfortunately, I live in Arkansas, which is quite a bit south, and there is a prediction for clouds and rain tonight. Having said that, I once saw the northern lights here about twenty years ago, I was living in a rural community and just happened to step outside around 11:00 PM. I didn’t know what I was seeing for several minutes before I realized what it was. It was memorable for me. I can only imagine what it looks like in the northern latitudes.

  4. Terry the northen lights in person, even the spectacular ones are never as vibrant or as bright as they are in photos. Kind of like when you photograph the milky way. It’s many times for brilliant on the monitor than to the naked eye. Nevertheless they are spectacular especially when they are as strong as last night.

    At least you won’t be freezing your feet outside tonight. LOL


  5. Breathtaking…..beautiful and loving story.

  6. Thanks for the beautiful story about your dad. Was very touching to say the least. Yep he’s looking out for you!

  7. John, I think that we all have a connection with those important people from our past. It’s funny that so many years later, I still have thoughts about my departed dad. I am now almost twice as old as he was when he died and still fill like a little boy when I think of him.
    Thank you for visiting and commenting,

  8. What a wonderful way to link with your father…..and what a great shot.
    I’m so jealous of all your aurora time :-)

  9. Thank you.

    Aren’t there aurora where you are in the UK? I always thought that you were far enough north to see them.

  10. Yes, we see them, but not in quantity you get…..

  11. This is one of the best photos you’ve ever posted in my eye. That thrill, no sleep, standing in awe and even having an emotional connection. I find those times special and love hearing others experience this. Photographers are lucky in this way:) Hang on to that image Dan….

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