Watershed Photography » Langley BC photographer Craig Roberts

I happened upon Vancouver artist Ken Gerberick at a local vintage car show last fall, as he set up off the main roadway against the flow of spectators and other showcars on this day with two of his ‘art cars’ on display.  I’ve encountered a couple of these art installations at VW shows over the last decade, but this was the first time I was introduced to this as an actual medium – I just figured people liked sticking things on their cars to attract attention.

Chatting with Ken, I learned that there was a healthy interest in this form of artistic expression and in fact these were two of the five ‘art cars’ he’s completed in a varied artistic career spanning several decades.  The one I was most drawn to was known as the “Emblem car”, for completely obvious reasons. Every square inch of this 1957 Pontiac Pathfinder is adorned with chrome emblems and name badges that Ken sourced by scouring through auto wrecker yards; by his own admission the display contains nearly 6000 separate emblems and took over 2500 hours to complete back in 1990. In addition the car teems with gleaming chrome hub caps and chrome rear tail lights stuffed onto the rear window ledge – you can honestly get lost in the “Where’s Waldo” search of your favorite car maker’s emblems.

I’m glad that I had the foresight, as I was beginning to leave his area, to ask Ken if would allow me to make a portrait of him beside his car artwork.  Despite the hasty request, I really enjoy this resulting image of him, processed with a black and white treatment to celebrate the mostly monochrome “palette” he established with this art car.  An honest portrayal of the artist I had the pleasure of discussion for a brief period on that Saturday morning.

My few words here hardly do justice to Ken’s artistic history – his website has far more detail about his range of artistic endeavors.

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The artist: Ken Gerberick

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In what has become somewhat of an annual January tradition I found myself heading out, far earlier than anyone should during the first Sunday in January, to make some images of the sunrise off the pier in Steveston BC.  Driving into this small village in the early hours, you can hear every nuance of sound hanging in the early morning mist and fog that won’t dissipate for a few more hours; the streets in and around are silent and deserted, broken only by the hum and the yellow hue from the overhead streetlights.

As I passed one of the local shop’s window display caught my attention – in the darkness it had the appearance of a theatre stage, illuminating just the important characters while the rest hid back in the shadows. In the light of day this dramatic scene would be non-existent, lost to the open exposure in the manner of house lights coming up at the conclusion of a performance.

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The docks around here have an ecosystem all to their own, a dance repeated daily, annually – and has been for decades, back when the boats were returning to the docks to offload their cargo to the Georgia Cannery, rather than to the entertainment of tourists. There in an uneasy silence and calm from the water, before the bilge pumps on the boats kick in, the vendors emerge to set up their own theatrical stage and the gulls congregate and circle in search of whatever offerings the sea and boats will provide.
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Shakespeare wrote, “All the world’s a stage …”, sometimes it takes an effort to appreciate the performance and see if for what it truly is.

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At the end of the school year I had the pleasure to spend a few hours photographing Faith, a very energetic and confidant young lady whose poise and presence extended beyond her years. She is determined to enter modeling in the future, and brought her own take on “America’s Next Top Model” to our session.  She was a real trooper and battled through the heat on the first day of our warmest and dryest summer in the Lower Mainland in forever. Finally crashing on a park bench, I knew she was spent by that point but it also created the final image posted below, honest and natural.

  • Dolores - December 17, 2013 - 10:33 am

    Beautiful young lady. Photos are quite good also

Although I am not a wedding photographer, recent newlyweds Laurel and Dan asked me to make some post-wedding images for them locally, as they had recently been married in Las Vegas and were wanting photos include for their upcoming local reception.

We chose a couple of locations in and around the Langley area, including the old schoolhouse and barn in Campbell Valley Regional Park as well as the hidden gem of Sengall Gardens, both settings that I thought would complement their personalities. You never know what Vancouver weather in May will bring, and despite the days of rain previous to our date we were welcomed with an overcast respite for the morning that we needed to complete these.

Thankfully Laurel & Dan tolerated me as we darted from one location to another, and I was able to deliver a great collection of  wonderful images to them.