Mountain Portage Rapids, Wood Buffalo National Park, Alberta, Canada

Photograph by Karl Johnston
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During the summer months North American White Pelicans nest in this area. I walked along the rocky beachside, which took me the whole day, photographing them swooping overhead in formation. There were dozens, nearly a hundred, flying around that day like nature’s own jet planes. It was an amazing air show, and an amazing light show. The mighty Slave River hums in the background, like a heartbeat of the ancient land around me.

4 Responses

  1. George Lessard

    Very nice exposure… very good depth there… and depth of field. Excellent weight to the image to…. And the colours are glorious. Could not have done a better composition/framing myself.

    I’m from the film/darkroom era and was (still am?) a practitioner.

    So I’m now a Photoshopper and when necessary do what we used to do in fluids, digitally.

    So asking as one with a foot in both those worlds … Would you consider speaking more about what you did with this shot both in camera and, if used, in Photoshop or other imagining program you might have used?

    • Karl Johnston

      Sure thing man, no problem.

      I like an inbetween of the “silky” long exposure look, which i find a bit overdone and cliche. Lacks drama of seeing the natural movement and appreciating the chaos of these waters. I know you’ve been there so you know what I mean by that i hope.

      Amazingly most of this was done in adobe camera raw using CS6- extensive control of the highlights (as you know, shooting into the sun is quite challenging) as well as applying an additional gradient filter to create drama of contrast and vibrance in the sky. I wanted to get the same colors back that were projected on the rocks, whereas the blinding light of the sun burst into the camera largely diluted that.

      In photoshop I like to scale down multiple times and then create a sharpen layer. The technique as I know it was explained to me as the “marc adamus sharpening technique.”

      Often on the last sharpen I like to “oversharpen” and then apply a soft-light filter to the sharpen layer (Instead, I go to “fade” the effect under the edit menu. rather than creating a separate layer in the layer menu).

      I hope that shed some light for you! No pun intended.

  2. tayla fennell

    hey i was wondering if i could get a biography of terje sorgjerd as i am doing an assignment on his inspriring photos, any information would be much appreciated, thankyou


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