Five Week Road Trip Through Saskatchewan

Our research map listed a lot of places to go, things to do, and people to meet. We decided on a more centralized approach: get a B&B for several nights and do forays out to photograph. Hanna was our first stop, try Chevy in the Levy at dawn again – no light at all this time – bust. On to Bindloss, Maidstone, Saskatoon, Canora, Regina, Mossbank, Eastend, and Maple Creek. Pink & Blue Tavern, Flocking Crackle, Blue Fairies, Hamton Hillscape, Red White & Blues, and Blue’s Got the Blues. Canola fields providing a bright yellow backdrop: a house, barn, tractors, a red truck. And the Norman Douglas Shipton residence… The Bone House was gone…

Saskatchewan Ghost Town Trail

Saskatchewan Ghost Town Trail

Dereliction—Alberta Sweep

One Week Road Trip Into Southern Alberta

Before heading out to Saskatchewan for five weeks we decided to sweep through the Alberta locations our research had targeted – get them out of the way. We were already familiar with the Drumheller area, and the Atlas #4 Coal Mine National Historic Site, where a Blood Moon was shot. We soon found out there were big empty townships in the middle. But the edges were intriguing: Pink Dreams, Hussar Hardware, Frac’d, Hermes & Aphrodite, Chinook Rainbow, and Field Stone Wall Ruins. We found Chevy in the Levy, but the light was dreary that afternoon. So we elected to return another day and try a dawn shot (2½ h drive out, 4:00 am ETA in mid-summer). The “golden hour” was only 10 minutes, a narrow slit between low and high clouds obscuring the sunrise (yellow version). By the time I got a 10x neutral density filter on, extending the exposure to 30 seconds, the morning light had gone (blue version).

Dereliction - Alberta Sweep

Dereliction – Alberta Sweep


Two Week Reconnaissance Road Trip

We wanted to test the effluent – see if there was enough abandoned dereliction left around to warrant a longer photography expedition. So the adventure began: we hopped in the Jeep and headed south, mostly Saskatchewan ghost towns, for two weeks. We absolutely found stuff: perishing, disintegrating, crackling: Whizz Bang near Val Marie, Looked Like an Egyptian in Robsart, Orkney Oil Slick on Marvin’s Grocery window, The Piano (Has Been Drinking), and The Bone House. We took a side trip to visit the healthy free ranging wild Bison that had been repatriated into Grasslands National Park – what a beautifully rare environment – what a wicked thunderstorm – our poor old tent received a direct red-zone hit…



Dereliction – Coming Soon

Dereliction—Colours of Abandonment

Our latest photography expeditions are being compiled – just in time for Exposure Festival in February.

Dereliction is an eye on things abandoned: ignored, forgotten, forlorn, fading away, dismissed by our modern predilection for everything new.

  • Following the Ghost Town Trail along obsolete railroads: from Tiny to Biggar, Eastend to Westbend, Smuts to Maidstone.
  • Searching houses, stores, shops, barns, and churches left to the elements, owls, and racoons.
  • Capturing vignettes of abstract beauty, hidden away in stuff left behind: crackling paint, peeling wallpaper, perishing linoleum, disintegrating vinyl, rusting equipment.
  • Revealing a context of depression, foregone inhabitants just walked away, vanished, disappeared—or were maybe escorted away in a straightjacket.
  • Wondering if there was intention to return, but not enough room for one last suitcase, not to mention the piano.
  • Exposing the edgy side—welcome to The Bone House…

But first, here’s the plan, Stan: after a two week reconnaissance road trip, one week to sweep southern Alberta, then a five week photography expedition to Saskatchewan – eight weeks on the Ghost Town Trail! Added a few more days and clicks for Chevy in the Levy… Check out our adventure planning map here:

Prairie Ghost Towns

Prairie Ghost Towns

Exposure 2014 Mimosa Brunch

The Frost Series: Birth

The Frost Series: Birth

Image Seekers Urban Concept Gallery

Featuring the hand painted tins of guest photographer Brenda Castonguay.Corrosion, an abstract eye on metal, by resident photographer David Leech.

Sunday, February 9th, 11:00 am – 2:00 pm
Marda Loop @ 2014 – 23rd Avenue SW
Everybody Welcome!

Maria Fernanda Feltes ‘Invenciones Naturales’


Image Seekers Urban Concept Gallery is now featuring Maria Fernanda Feltes exhibition series titled
‘Invenciones Naturales’ in the upper gallery. Fernanda is an honors graduate in Fine Arts from the
Universidad Nacional de La Plata in Buenos Aires.  Recognized, exhibited, and published in Argentina,
Fernanda now resides in Calgary.

Lucky us! We’re open Saturday & Sunday until November 15th, 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.
Marda Loop at 2104 – 23rd Avenue SW, Calgary. Private viewings can easily be arranged.

Purple vs. Red

Crimson door, azure fender, lacy purple petticoat on a castaway restoration auto part (David Leech)

Behind our Ashburton lodging grew a potato patch. Behind the potato patch withered a row of little old cars. The land owner had erected a flash new Quonset to showcase his bright, shiny, restored car collection. I left a note on the locked gate. The spud grower phoned, and through his rather muddy accent, said pictures were ok, with him. In the dewy dawn we hopped the fence to search the castaway bones for colour. Drew red blood on the barbed wire. Took green stinging nettles on the shin. One of the old Canterbury cars sported a crimson door, an azure fender, and corrosion unveiled a lacy purple petticoat.

G’night, Sleep Tight

Don't let the bed springs bite! (David Leech)

Don’t let the bed springs bite! And if they do, just grab a camera, and shoot some black and blue. Reflected gold helps warm up the bed with a sparkle of sunlight. Just some beautiful old detritus stashed away at the Sandon Ghost Town scrap metal dealership. West Kootenay, BC.

Barbed Wire

Barbed Wire Roll in the Rumsey Natural Area Rodeo Grounds (David Leech)

“There are no roads here” (Corb Lund)… Nearly everywhere else on the Alberta map is criss-crossed by right-of-ways surveyed every mile east/west, every two miles north/south. These two empty townships of wild aspen parkland and native prairie grasslands are the Rumsey Natural Area and Environmental Reserve – hummocky moraine left behind by retreating continental ice sheets. Thrown over a post in the dilapidated rodeo grounds was an unused roll of barbed wire.

Tutu Cacophony

Colourful Tutus on a Gypsy Caravan. (David Leech)

Circled on the Ashburton Domain was a flamboyant display of Gypsy wagons. Handmade crafts were the main attraction: glass blower, wood turner, jewelry maker, greenstone carver… This cacophony of tutus enticed the pretty girls to dress up in their favourite colour and dance joyfully through the caravan.

Fine Art

Crimson door, azure fender, lacy purple petticoat on a castaway restoration auto part
Purple vs. Red

Behind our Ashburton lodging grew a potato patch. Behind the potato patch withered a row of little o…

More in Fine Art


Saskatchewan Ghost Town Trail

Five Week Road Trip Through Saskatchewan Our research map listed a lot of places to go, things to do…

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