Golden hour produces golden photos

Ronald Bonnetrouge photo courtesy of Posterjack On June 4, Ronald Bonnetrouge photographed the Mackenzie River at Fort Providence at sunset.

Ronald Bonnetrouge photo courtesy of Posterjack
On June 4, Ronald Bonnetrouge photographed the Mackenzie River at Fort Providence at sunset.

Three photographers in Hay River have had their work included in a national project.

On June 4, Posterjack – a Toronto-based online printing company specializing in turning photos into large-scale artwork – hosted a national photography project where 125 photographers all over the country joined together to capture Canada’s Golden Hour shortly after sunrise and before sunset.

Hay River was represented by photographers Gary Vizniowski, Adam Hill and Ronald Bonnetrouge.

Bonnetrouge photographed the Mackenzie River at Fort Providence at sunset.

Hill showed off the beauty of Alexandra Falls at sunrise.

And, Vizniowski chose to shoot his image at the Hay River public beach because he wanted to show the world there are beaches up North.

Vizniowski said, as a client of Posterjack, the company’s idea was interesting and he responded to the request for photographers to become involved.

“It was just a chance to do something different,” he said. “Most of my pictures are of birds and nature like flowers and mammals. So this was sort of a little bit different and so I thought I would challenge myself a little bit.”

Vizniowski took his photo of Hay River Beach at about 4 a.m. on June 4.

Hill said the project linked Canadian photographers around a common theme.

“It’s not a bad idea,” he said. “I thought it was actually a pretty good one and something that we could really capitalize on in the Northwest Territories considering our golden hour is kind of golden hours here.”

Hill said he chose to photograph Alexandra Falls because it’s probably the most impressive landscape feature in the Hay River area and the South Slave.

Tim Faught, the president of Posterjack, said this is the first time the company has initiated such a project.

It was inspired by a book from the 1980s called A Day in the Life of Canada.

“We thought, well, it doesn’t seem like anybody has redone that in the newer digital era of photography,” said Faught.

The company sent out an e-mail to its more than 70,000 customers in Canada asking who would like to take part in the project, and got many responses.

The 125 chosen photographers all captured images on June 4 right after sunrise or just before sunset.

“It (is) usually the most picturesque time of day and we kind of wanted to make it a bit of a challenge for the photographers rather than just say they could take a picture any time of the day,” said Faught.

The photos turned out great, he said. “We got them from all over the country. I would have liked to see actually a few more from the North but that’s the way the cookie crumbled this time. But I think it’s something we’d like to do again just because of the response we got from it and how well it turned out. I’m not sure we would do exactly the same theme but I think a Canada-wide project like that we’d want to do again.”

Forty of the photos were displayed at an exhibit in Toronto on June 15, and a number were sold. All proceeds were donated to the Nature Conservancy of Canada which is a national charity that aims to protect endangered species and threatened habitats.

Posterjack will also be producing a book featuring 50 of the photos, and again the proceeds will be donated to the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

–Paul Bickford