Patterns on the Prairie

minimalist, long exposure, low key, black and white, Dan Jurak, landscape, fineart, fine art, prairie, rural, dark sky, crop, fields, In central Alberta spring is a funny thing. We have such a large province with varied geography. It can be snowing in one part of the province and sunny and 20 Celsius in another.

Southern Alberta has recently had a few days of heavy rain. Where I live, in Edmonton it is still very dry, little rain so far and things are greening up slowly. To the south along the American border it is almost wildflower time. The long hours of sunlight and the recent moisture will have the foothills and prairies teeming with wildflower blossoms. On the other hand the southern prairies will turn brown and dry before we do.

The higher you go the later spring comes and there are still plenty of snow covered trails in Banff and Jasper. Some areas of the parks won’t be snow free for another month at least.

Around Edmonton trees are leafing out and brown, dead grass is being replaced by this years growth. Farm fields have been tilled and seeded, most that I have seen anyways but because of the dryness very few have anything sprouting yet.

This presents a challenge photographically. There is very little to take pictures of so I am taking pictures of “nothing” so to speak. Empty fields. Bald hills. Almost cloudless skies. Like I said, nothing.

This is a good thing. I went out on Saturday, yesterday and only took three photos. One was ruined because during the five minute exposure the tripod had moved and the image was blurred. On these very sunny days the viewfinder display is so dark that I am having trouble seeing it clearly and am considering either bringing along a focusing cloth from my viewfinder camera or buying a magnifying hood.

The last picture of the afternoon was taken when I was headed home. The rows in the field from seeding caught my eye. There was nothing in the field but rows and bits of last years crop that had been tilled under. Nothing to take a picture of but a pattern of rows on a hillside.

In processing I bumped up the contrast of the dirt to make the rows more pronounced. They would have otherwise been lost.

Works for me.

Happy shooting,



~ by Dan Jurak on May 17, 2015.

10 Responses to “Patterns on the Prairie”

  1. Very nice lines.

  2. Thank you Tim. They are something that I usually paid attention to when the crops were in but now…

    Thank you for visiting and commenting,

  3. Spectacular photograph! Proves there is really nothing that is not worth photographing

  4. Dan, you’re very welcome.

  5. Thank you Sukanya. I think that almost anything can be made into an interesting photograph is the light and weather is right.

    Thank you for visiting and commenting,


  7. Spectacular photo! Great lines and contrasts.

  8. Thank you Jarek.

    Thank you for visiting and commenting,

  9. How many times have you heard people say, Ah the prairies, they’re boring, nothing to see. Your creative work time & again shows us that there is plenty to see & photograph, thank you for being such an inspiration. Please keep the posts coming.

  10. Rob, thank you for the kind words. I think that interesting landscapes can be taken almost anywhere in the world. The sad thing is that for some the grass always seems greener elsewhere.

    Thank you for visiting and commenting,

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