Saturday, 22 December 2012

Christmas Lights 
Upper Canada Village, Ontario

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Winter Solstice

Pangnirtung Fjord, Nunavut

Happy Winter Solstice!  At long last the unofficial countdown to summer 2013 can begin!

Here's an article I wrote for the Nov/Dec 2005 issue of Above & Beyond (the inflight magazine of First Air).  Enjoy!

The seasonal journey of the midnight sun

In the coming days as the fading rays of the midnight sun slip below the arctic horizon, another season of polar darkness unfolds.  This seasonal game of tug-of-war between continuous sunlight and winter darkness occurs because our earth orbits the sun on an inclined axis of 66 ½o.  As a consequence, the midnight sun, or polar night, is only observed in areas within the Arctic Circle, an imaginary boundary circumnavigating the earth at 66 ½o N.

During the winter solstice, on December 21st, the far north is angled furthest from the sun.  On that day, every region within the Arctic Circle is shrouded in darkness for at least 24 hours; the number of days in which the sun lies below the horizon progressively increases the further north one travels - this ranges from one day on the Arctic Circle to a maximum of six months directly at the pole.  Conversely, six months later, during the summer solstice, the opposite holds true and the same region experiences at least one full-day of the midnight sun.

Imagine, if you will, spending the polar winter on the North Pole itself.  After months of darkness a time approaches in mid-February when a faint glow in the distance becomes noticeable.  This glow completely circles the horizon every 24 hours and becomes brighter with each passing day.  By late February the faintest stars disappear in the brightening sky as the sun tries to clear the horizon.  Finally, on March 21st (spring equinox), the upper edge the solar disk appears for the first time in six months.   The sun continues its gradual climb until it reaches its highest point in the sky on June 21st, the summer solstice.  Then, sadly, it begins its slow descent until it disappears below the horizon during the fall equinox in late September where it will remain for the next six months before rising again to cast its rays on the top of the world.  

©Claus Vogel
September 24, 2005

Frozen Facts:

Sunset and Sunrise times (2006) for communities on Baffin and Ellesmere Islands. 


Polar Night Begins

First Sunrise
# Days Polar Night
66 05 N
Dec. 21
Dec. 21
67 30N
Dec. 16
Dec. 27
Clyde River
70 30N
Nov. 23
Jan. 19, 06
Arctic Bay
73 05N
Nov. 12
Jan. 30, 06
Grise Fiord
76 25N
Nov. 1
Feb. 10, 06
80 00N
Oct. 21
Feb. 20, 06
82 30N
Oct. 15
Feb. 27, 06
North Pole
90 N
Sept. 22
Mar. 21, 06
6 months

☼  Community lies below the Arctic Circle

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Winter along the Klondike

Klondike Hwy at Fox Lake, Yukon

Good morning from a very chilly Yukon (minus 50 degrees C)

Driving to Whitehorse from Pelly Crossing these days can be a very lovely and lonely four-hour journey.  With temperatures well below minus 40 degrees C., one sees more wildlife along the Klondike Hwy than vehicles.  During a recent grocery run into town we spotted a herd of elk, a mink surfing through the snow, several grouse soaking up the rays of the sun and a lynx wandering across the highway.  Not surprisingly, we only came across six vehicles throughout the 260km drive.

When we left Pelly, early that morning, the mercury had read minus 40 degrees.  By the time we had arrived in Whitehorse the temperature had soared to minus 18!!  Ahh, welcome to the tropics of the Canadian North!!

Hope this finds you warm wherever you are in the world.


Please post a comment.

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

And the lights came back....

Pelly Crossing Campground, Yukon

It's official - another season of the dancing northern lights has begun in grand style.  Last night, despite the minus 30 degree temperatures, the much anticipated solar storm (which was unleashed by the sun a couple of days ago) slammed into the upper reaches of our atmosphere.  The result was an impressive celestial show that unfurled across the entire circumpolar north.  Folks from Russia, Norway, Greenland, Nunavut, Yukon and Alaska were treated to a spectacular display of dancing lights.  Welcome back!!

Photo Info:  Nikon D800 with a Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 at 1000ASA, f/3.4 at 20 sec.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Driving into Autumn

Klondike Hwy, Yukon

Good morning from the Yukon!

What a splendid day yesterday turned out to be.  Shortly after 3pm the clouds finally broke free to reveal the sun and a Yukon landscape draped in its early autumn glory.  I decided at the point it was time to hop into the car and take short drive on the Klondike Hwy.  Glad I did.

The combination of the fall colours, the late afternoon sun, the dramatic clouds set against a brilliant blue sky and an open road all came into play when taking today's images – the setting was perfect for the images I was looking for.   The conditions were also right for using a circular polarizing filter, which reduced the glare of the sun on the wet leaves and brought out the textures in the clouds, the road and trees.

September has started out picture perfect – first the sandhill cranes and now the fall colours.  Wonder what today will bring.

Hope you enjoy the last full day of summer.


PHOTO INFO:  Images photographed with a Nikon D800 and Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 lens.  Tripod mounted, cable release attached - ISO 160, f/16 and 18, Manual setting.  Circular polarizer filter attached

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Autumn's Grace and Elegance

Sandhill cranes fly directly overhead
Pelly Crossing, Yukon

Welcome back to the Yukon!
I arrived safe and sound and just in time to see the start of the fall migration season - the Sandhill cranes have returned.  Oh so beautiful!
Hope you are well in your corner of the world.

Photo info:  Images captured with a Nikon D800 and Nikkor 300mm f/2.8 lens attached.  ISO250, f/7.1 Aperture priority, Continuos focus set to HIGH, Vibration Reduction ON, handheld

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Summer Fireworks

Here are few images from Saturday nights finale of the Casino du-lac Leamy Sound of Light Show.

 A spectacular display of pyrotechnics. 

 Fabulous evening!

Hope all is well in your corner of the world.


Nikon D800, Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 at f/7.1 and 8.  ISO 500, bulb mode.  Tripod mounted and cable release attached.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Photographing Fireworks

Team China - Story of Butterfly Lovers
Casino du-lac Leamy Sound of Light Festival
Wed August 15, 2012

Saturday evening marks the grand finale of the Casino du-lac Leamy's annual International Fireworks festival held in Gatineau, Quebec.  Last night, Team China performed their "Story of the Butterfly Lovers" show to a symphony of sound, light and colour.  

Photographing fireworks is relatively straight forward provided you keep a few pointers in mind.  Listed below are a handful of helpful tips:

- Camera must be mounted on a tripod
- Attach a cable release to camera (this minimizes the shaking of the camera when you snap the shot)
- Set ISO to 500 and shutter speed to BULB mode
- f/stop set to 7.1
- Set camera to manual focus - make sure your camera is pre-focused to a point where the fireworks will be displayed
- You do not need to use a flash
- Quickly press the cable release for each burst
- Review images during a lull in the performance to ensure your images are in focus and not overexposed.  If overexposed, or underexposed, adjust the length of timing you hold the shutter release.

The above images were photographed using a Nikon D800 with Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 lens attached (set to f7.1)

See you Saturday night.

Email me if you have any questions or wish to share your images with me.


Sunday, 12 August 2012

Sound of Light 2012

Team USA - Love is all you need
Composite Image (Sat Aug 11)

Greetings once again!

Hard to believe that summer is quickly slipping through our fingers.  Where did the time go??

If you are in the Ottawa region during the next few days I highly recommend spending an evening (or two) watching the fireworks at Lac Leamy (near the Casino in Gatineau).  This years annual Casino du lac-Leamy Sound of Light Show kicked off two weeks ago and concludes in the coming days – China performs on Wednesday night (August 15th) while the grand finale is set for Saturday August 18th.  

In anticipation of the upcoming shows I'll post a blog outlining some tips to photographing fireworks.  Stay tuned!

Happy Sunday!


Image info:  Camera - Nikon D800; Lens - Nikor 24-70mm f/2.8; ISO 400-500; f 6 to 7.1

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

GO Canada GO

Opening Ceremonies - Vancouver 2010

Wishing all our athletes the very best in London!! 
GO Canada GO!!

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

New Beginnings

I'm excited to announce that I have taken a giant step forward with Tradewinds Photography.  

During the next few months the talented team at Outcrop Communications, Yukon branch, will work with me to develop and design a new image for my photography business.  We've already discussed some exciting new changes – I cannot wait to introduce you to

Until then, I invite you to follow my progress on this blog where I will also continue to share my images, stories and introduce you to some new products and workshops.

I've been sitting on my behind for far too long – time for some new challenges!!

Here's to new beginnings!  How exciting.


Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Simplicity on the Cape

Head of the Meadow Beach, Cape Cod

Good morning from the Cape! 

I could easily spend the entire summer on Cape Cod photographing its rolling sand dunes and blue skies.  Such simple subjects to photograph, yet an endless array of possibilities given the changing light, skies and colours. 

Hope you are enjoying your summer.


Monday, 9 July 2012

Postcards from the Cape

Intertidal Pool near Race Point

Seagrass and the dunes

Intertidal Pool 

Sunset over the Cape (notice the sunspots)

Sunset over the Cape

Greetings the from the Cape!

Cape Cod has always been one of my favourite places to photograph.  The soft pastel colours of late afternoon sun, the golden dunes, the seagrass gently blowing in the breeze and the miles upon miles of empty beaches - such is life on the Cape.

Hope all is well in your corner of the world.


Friday, 6 July 2012

In full bloom

Wild Rose

Jacob's Ladder

The Yukon is in full bloom – what a fabulous time to be out and about with camera in hand.  The wild roses, poppies, daises, asters, fireweed and a host of other plants are now out in full flower. 

Monday, 2 July 2012

Canada Day Fireworks

Here's one more image from yesterday's Canada Day fireworks display over Parliament Hill. This photo is actually a compilation of three separate shots taken at various points throughout last nights pyrotechnic show.  I used the cloning tool feature in Photoshop to add two shots (shot 1 of the the centre bursts and shot 2 of the blue burst to the right) to the original image that just included the large orange burst to the right. 
Let me know what you think?

Hope you enjoyed your holidays.


July issue of Above & Beyond is now out

The July issue of Above & Beyond is now available onboard all First Air flights and in bookstores across the country.  Two of my grizzly bear images are featured in an article describing how grizzly bears have moved northwards into polar bear country.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Happy Canada Day

Fireworks over Parliament Hill - July 1, 2012
Nikon D800 w/ Nikkor 24-70 f/2.8 lens
Image specs to follow

Wishing all Canadians at home and abroad a very Happy Canada Day!

Happy 145th Birthday Canada!!

Enjoy your holiday weekend,