All posts by Ken Gillespie

Church in the middle of nowhere, Canadian Prairies

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You can call it “little church on the prairie” or “church in the middle of nowhere”, but Union Point United Church has a very interesting past.  It’s the last remnant of the small town of Union Point, Manitoba.  Situated in the middle of divided Hwy 75 just south of Ste. Agathe.  The original church was built in 1887, burned down in 1939, and was rebuilt in 1940.  The town vanished in the 1950’s, steamboats, stagecoaches, and steam engines stopped here in the late 1800’s.  The town of Union Point was an important stopover point for many settlers heading west.

Surprise visitors, Stewart Canyon, Banff

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These guys wandered into my landscape shot while I photographed the trestle bridge at Stewart Canyon, near Lake Minnewanka, Banff.  Now it doesn’t look like they are very close, but I was using a 16-35mm lens on my full frame camera, so they are very close.  One of those rare lucky moments took a pretty mundane image and made it much more memorable.  A group of tourists along with my wife and two dogs retreated from the bridge allowing them to cross without much stress.

We returned the next day, hoping to get them front on as they crossed, but after a couple hours of patiently waiting had to move one due to time constraints and impatient dogs, I did manage a few other images on the return including the rocky island in Lake Minnewanka, below.

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Landscape Photography fail leads to the big marsh.

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As a landscape photographer you learn quickly to accept failed attempts when it comes to getting that one great image, particularly when it comes to the weather cooperating.  We set out on the past weekend to find a pebble beach for the forecasted mixed cloud sunset.  Promising for an interesting long exposure image on the east side of Lake Winnipeg.  At very least my wife could find some much prized chanterelle mushrooms and the dogs could get in a good hike.

After several hours of scouting I failed to find that perfect location, the interesting sky was clearing over the big lake, and we found only a handful of mushrooms.  The dogs did get in a moderate hike, however.  We scrapped the shoot and decided to stop by Oak Hammock Marsh prior to sunset in an attempt to salvage the days photography.  Not the best time of year for marsh activity, but we did get in another decent hike and a few keepers.

I particularly liked the image above of the Purple Martin House, although it lacks any bird activity which would have made for a much more interesting image.

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Viewing blind at sunset

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Icelandic Festival of Manitoba, Gimli

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A few images from the Viking Village at the annual Icelandic Festival of Manitoba.  Last year I shot more of the Viking battle scenes, this year I made an effort to shoot the village. Because I arrived a bit late I choose my favourite camera lens combination, the Canon 5D Mark III and the 70-200 f/2.8L IS II and shot handheld.

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Goat on play structure, Pineridge Hollow, Manitoba

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Pineridge Hollow near Birdshill Provincial Park, Oakbank, Manitoba is great destination for a short day trip.  The quaint rustic property includes a wonderful store, restaurant, and summer farmers market.  But for me being a photographer and animal-lover, the goat on his/her very own play structure was the highlight.

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Vintage steam train, Prairie Dog Central Railway

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Vintage steam train No.3 of the Prairie Dog Central Railway, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.  While out picking Saskatoon berries and hiking with the dogs, we stopped by on the way home, mainly to scout out the location to photograph the train at a future time.