Edmonton is one of the largest northern urban centers in the world. Located in Canada, Edmonton is the capital city of Alberta. The city has a strong history as a trade center, and it served as the last major stop for the Klondikers during the Gold Rush. This is why we Edmontonions call our city "The Gateway to the North"

Please enjoy my perspective of one of of the fastest growing urban areas this side of China.

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Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Fairmont Hotel MacDonald

This Gothic creature is found just off the main door of one of Edmonton's Premier Hotels.
The hotel was build by a defunct national railway company called The Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Co.
Here is what Wiki has to say on the hotel : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotel_Macdonald
In the background of the picture is a representation of the Alberta Coat of Arms. It lacks much of the detail that the actual coat has.
Have a wonderfully gothic weekend everyone MUH HA HA HA!

Friday, May 30, 2008

The Muttart Conservatory

The Conservatory is currently closed for renovations.

Each of the four pyramids is a different climate zone. In the dead of winter you can escape into the sub tropics or maybe the dessert.

The Muttart is another expression of Edmonton's love for pyramids. In the 70's an influential local architect, Peter Hemingway, started using this shape. the pyramid is being marketed as something very "Edmonton" I suspect that our new hockey arena will also be a pyramid of some sort.

For more info : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muttart_Conservatory

Please don't be alarmed with the colour of the river. It is still spring run off in the mountains and the river is heavy with silt.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Shaw Convention Center

The Convention Center is a building of glass and steel that is built on the banks of the river valley. A funicular runs between the two fountains.
Although the building oozes a late 70`s early 80`s design style, all the light, plants and people create a very interesting space.
An expansion wing just opened `Hall D`
It features a panoramic view of the river valley, but I could not get in there today as there was a convention going on.
Maybe next time.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

It's a Nice Day for a Billy Idol Song

It's wedding season!
These shots were taken while assisting a photographer friend in Detroit. I am pushing myself to shoot live subjects more as I try to become more rounded in my abilities. Personally I find it very difficult to preform portrait work as my real passions lie in Architecture and Design.
I am taking the camera with me to work today.. so I should have some more photos of Edmonton tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Andy Bell of Erasure

This is a very Intense looking Andy Bell. He put on a fantastic mini show over the IML weekend. I will also plug the fact that he is in the True Colors tour.
I would go see him again! (Just incase you were wondering)

Monday, May 26, 2008

IML 2008

Instead of posting some archived photos that I took prior to my vacation, I have decide to post vacation photos instead. This is at IML in Chicago. I am lucky in that the official photographer for the event is also a close friend and he allowed my to be his "sidekick" for the weekend.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Big Brother, Little Brother.

I wish I could have vaporize the chain link fence, but I just can't get over what may be the cutest little mohawk ever!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

An "Artsy" shot

The new age monkey bars!

So much diffrent then the version I remeber, and so muchmorevisual too ;-)

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Federal Building

This is the Canadian coat of arms with the various provincial coats behind it.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Alberta Legislator Building

This is where the Provincial Government sits. I don't know why, but the large reflecting pool that sits between the main building and the fountain is still empty. That large brown square just left to the truck in the second picture is normally full of water and people.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

People Under Trees

More pictures of spring. The person on the bike is down in the river valley and the other two are taken on the Provincial Legislative grounds. There will be more of the Legislative building in the next day or two.
I am off to Chi Town !

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


For the most part all this green happened over a day and a half.Spring just exploded all over the place.
Our sunrise is just before 5 am and sun set is edging close to 10 pm. All this sun makes for an intense spring.
Canada's May long weekend has just ended and I am back to work today, but I am off to Chi town on Thursday for the USA Memorial Day long weekend.

Monday, May 19, 2008


Spring has hit the prairie like a freight train hitting a brick wall.
All it takes is one hot day and a bit of rain and you get this... (wait for the pictures of the next few days))

Sunday, May 18, 2008

hanging out

A candid shot of a couple of ladies.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Mel C

Melanie C of the Spice Girls was in town. The show was put on at a very intimate space and all in all it was a lot of fun!

Not bad for 40 bucks.

If anyone wants a close up shot of her boots posted just let me know, as I have a number of them!

Friday, May 16, 2008

The CN Tower, Edmonton Style

When built in the 60's the CN Tower was the tallest office tower west of Toronto. I have come to love this building, but this was not always the case. When I first moved to Edmonton in the late 90's down town was depressed and this building was a shining beacon of that fact. The building sat empty because CN moved it's offices out of the city when the downtown rail yard was closed. The once proud sign on the top of the building, which lights up at night, had dark and flickering segments.

Now the building is full and the the sign is fixed. I have been studying architecture as a hobby and I have come to realize what a fantastic example of modern architecture this building is.

It's hard to notice but the CN tower is not square. The front and back of the tower concave slightly and the sides bow slightly outwards. The base has an all glass mezzanine that sits on top of the pedestal main floor.

City Hall Part 2 of 2

These poor balloons.. I look at the them and the phrase "So close yet so far" comes to mind

Thursday, May 15, 2008

City Hall 1 of 2

I don't know when city hall was rebuilt, but it can't be more than 20 years old. It's is situated right downtown across from our civic square. The reflection pool out front, has just been cleaned and should be filled any day. In the winter it serves as an ice rink and in the warmer months it is a fantastic water show and gathering spot.

Edmonton was named Canada's Cultural Capital in 2007. The title is awarded on a yearly basis. The Jester was tied into that in some way. I just love the way he pops against the neutral interior of the building.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Campbell's Soup Eat Your Heart Out

This Oinker is on display at City Hall. There is a series of these can statues promoting awareness of the city's needy and drawing attention to the food bank. Ironically someone stole a shopping bag worth of cans the other day.

I feel a little Andy Warholish making this post.

I have some great pictures of our award winning city hall coming over the next day or two.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Urban Playground

I caught these two young men practicing their free style running. This urban activity has been known to me for some years, but I have never seen anyone undertake it in Edmonton. I have always enjoyed watching it as it reminds me of modern dance.

As I walked past them and back into the office I overheard one say to the other "I am getting to old for this".
Free Style Running is a sport in which your run full out over an urban environment recklessly jumping, launching and catapulting your self over any encountered obstacle. The opening sequence of James Bond's: Casino Royal is the best example of the sport I have seen.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Ying and Yang... Or Clean and Dirty as it were

Ok... So the lap dance bar is next to "First Class" dry cleaning. This is funny to me in a multitude of ways.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

The New Sobeys

The new downtown market is now open. Modeled after a European style market it has delicate pastries, an oyster bar and bistro, gourmet deli and a fresh fish stand.

Unfortunately this photo may very well be his obituary by now!

The market opened Thursday and already has become a hub of activity and has brought the surrounding city blocks to life. In the summer the Market will be integrating with the open air farmers market that takes place just outside it's doors.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Dedicated to Kim at Seattle Daily Photo

I saw this guy waiting for the bus and all I could think about was Kim's post from a day or so ago.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Thanks for the helpful hints!

I really appreciate the help that was offered in respect to editing my Blog HTML.

Thank you to everyone who responded to my cry for help.

Small Messages

I am still under the weather, and have had to cancel my latest round of Tattoo work. As I was feeling sorry for myself I started looking at the morning light and this caught my eye. I guess it just wasn't my weekend to get inked.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Missed One..

I am not feeling well so I am blue bagging it...
New and fresh photos soon!
p.s. thanks for the blog info on my call for help

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Traditional small oil and gas exploration is giving way to mega oil sand developments. Over 100 Billion dollars in development is planned for the Edmonton area. The oil sands is very labor intensive. One can make 38 dollars an hour driving super sized dump trucks in Fort McMurray.
If you don't want to work up north.. Try Wendy's. Most places will give you an interview on the spot, and wages are around 10 bucks an hour. We have Universal health care, but your rent will be 1200 for a two bedroom apt.

Monday, May 5, 2008

A little help

I see a number of photo sites that post much larger and higher resolution pictures that what I am currently able to do.

I am currently downloading the photo directly to the blog via the post funtion.

Can anyone give me a hand?

Rig Pigs

Rig hands, or "Rig Pigs" as they were called when I was growing up, are an interesting bunch. Many of the first were farmers who would harvest in the spring and summer then work "the patch" in the fall and the winter. Working the rigs was hard dangerous work. Many people have died doing it. The clamps,like the ones in the above picture, would be suspended on chains and swinging around your head. During the 80's many riggers who are largely uneducated fell into the trap of large pay cheques coupled with drug and alcohol abuse. The patch has done a lot of work to change the perception of rig hands but it is still an extremely hard unforgiving job site. Many a 18 year old boy have dropped out of school to take up a job on the rigs.

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