Published on February 4, 2014
Vancouver is a city of contrasts. It is a dense urban oasis surrounded by a pristine and beautiful natural environment. It is a city filled with some of the most beautiful parkland hidden amongst its tall glassy skyscrapers. Vancouver sits on the headwaters of the Georgia Straight fed by the Pacific Ocean. To the North are the towering North Shore Mountains that play host to our three local ski hills. Behind these mountains the wilderness sprawls across the province. This contrast between urban and natural environments is what has, for many years, informed my photography. The juxtaposition between city and forest, between Vancouver’s skyscrapers and the mountains has always influenced my artistic eye. Being brought up in this city it would be impossible to say that it hasn't impacted me in some way. The photos I have chosen to present to you focus on the contrast between city and wilderness, drawing on the thin line that separates Vancouver from the mountains, forest and sea. You will no doubt observe this line when you look at my photos taken from atop Grouse Mountain that show the city surfacing from the clouds below. You can feel the contradiction of being surrounded by nature while spotting the urban jungle below you. I have juxtaposed this photo by shooting the urban landscape back dropped by the same mountains above. Furthermore, I wanted to show how our Ocean mirrors the urban environment; you can see how the city lights play off the surface of the water in an instant where the city blurs our distinction between “natural environments” and “the city”. The photographs I have submitted you also play with the idea of scale. As you can see with my urban landscape photos, the size of the mountains become almost negligible when contrasted with the height of the buildings. In some places the city feels massive. What is strange here is that Vancouver is actually a fairly small city in the grand scheme of things. Due to its scale Vancouver can feel more like a town. It always feels as if the mountains are hugging the city and we can’t escape it’s being enveloped by nature. My photography so far has aimed to convey this feeling: being at once in the city with nature, or being in nature at once with the city.