We have been living in Edmonton for almost two years now and our time here is coming to an end soon, but before we leave this beautiful city and the amazing province of Alberta, I wanted to get a new perspective of my favourite place in Edmonton: The River Valley.
One way to do it would have been to use a drone to get a bird’s eye of the North Saskatschewan River cutting its way through the city of Edmonton. I had already explored all my favourite spots in the River Valley and shot them in different light situations. So I guided my way through different offices, received safety training and eventually came up access to a spot on the campus of the University of Alberta, allowing me to get a unique perspective of downtown Edmonton, the iconic Highlevel Bridge and the River.
My first time on that vantage point, it was a golden fall day in the middle of September and the valley was glowing golden from the foliage under a blue sky. Next I went before going to the office in the morning and witnessed an insane display of fog rolling through the valley creating some special light, and lately I have been documenting various brilliant sunrises, with each having its own character. So even though it is one perspective, the colours and mood always differ, making this an appealing series for me and a goal of mine to capture more beauty in the next three months, when winter will be slowly taking over.
Let me just quickly add some thoughts for the composition. When I am up there I shoot with my 24-85 standard zoom lens on my Nikon D750, and I usually bring my ND-Filters as well, which will allow me to balance the sky using a Grad ND0.9. My general thought process for this scene is that I try to place the horizon on a line of thirds (black lines in the sketch), while I also find that the river with its flow and the Bridge help to guide the viewer (arrows). As you may see I also try to place downtown on the intersection of the thirds (at least roughly), this creates more interest. With the wider angle shots I will have more sky and when use a zoomed in view I will focus more on the river, this will be the case when the sky does not light up well.
As usual I would like to here from you what you think about this project and if there is a shot you would like to see in particular. I have three or four more situations envisioned that I can hopefully bring to life. Here are some more that I have captured so far. Thanks for reading.
Photography has brought me closer to nature, but when I first started it was more about the gear for me: I always wanted to upgrade, thought I really need this or that. Why not buy this awesome lens, it will help me to get better images. But I soon realized that I needed to just adapt the gear to what I shot, and that was mostly basketball in badly lit arenas. I ended up with a Nikon D700 in late 2010 and shot with that for four years. It worked great in every situation I shot, but when the Nikon D750 was announced I moved to that, as it had considerably better low-light capability, which would help me in those indoor fast-shutterspeed situations. After moving to Canada in 2015 I was even happier to have the D750, as night-photography became my new obsession. I upgraded some of my lenses and here is an overview about the gear that I use to get the images I regularly share with you:
1) Manfrotto X190Pro with a 3-Way Cullmann Head
Read about the stories behind the pictures.