This last week was a busy one for me and it was a bit of a challenge to squeeze some shooting time into the schedule. Given the limited time I had, I decided to stay a little closer to home and went out to Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park which is located just east of Cochrane, only about 30 minutes from where I live in north west Calgary. I had heard much about this new provincial park but had yet to spend any time exploring or shooting there so I thought I’d give it a shot. I was going in kind of blind that morning, arriving well before sunrise, and not having the slightest clue where I should go or set up for first light. Normally, this isn’t really the way you’re supposed to do it, but I wanted to challenge myself and just try to be as open as I could to what I was seeing around me and do my best to react to that. It was actually quite refreshing to look at a completely new area without any preconceived ideas of images I would make. I found that I was able to relax so much more and just focus on the scene as it presented itself and work on the images as I saw them. While there are certainly merits to pre scouting your locations ahead of time and planning out your shots (techniques I often use as well by the way), I find this type of blind approach to not only be a great creative exercise, but also a really enjoyable and relaxing way to work.
This image was taken just as the sun was making it’s way over the horizon and through the thin cloud cover in the east. I was really drawn to the beautifully soft, low angled light that was bathing the grass and trees in this scene. The low light also allowed me to use a longer exposure (5 seconds) and capture the motion of the grass blowing in the wind. I shot two horizontal images and stitched them together for the final result below.
I will definitely be visiting Glenbow Ranch again to do some more shooting and exploring. The park is much bigger than I first realized and I know now that there is much more to see. If you’re in the Calgary or Cochrane area, I’d encourage you to go check it out and take a walk or a bike ride on one of the many trails and pathways that wind through the park. Fall colour is in full swing out there right now and it’s absolutely beautiful!