Ucluelet - Fine Art Photography Prints

2014 was a great year for me in terms of landscape photography. I produced my first two films and was lucky enough to teach some great students in my many photography workshops at some gorgeous locations.

In one year I’ve photographed everything from frozen waterfalls, coastal aurora and vibrant rainforest to melting glaciers, Scottish castles and desert sunsets.

Read along as I take you through my favourite images of the year with foot notes about the locations and my experiences. I hope you enjoy, please share and Happy New Year.

Silver Falls State Park

Silver Falls State Park, Oregon

This spectacular state park is best seen in Spring, Fall and Winter. The Fall colours are gorgeous but if you’re lucky enough to catch the arctic blast in winter you’ll be rewarded with amazing ice columns and partially frozen waterfalls.

Oneonta Gorge, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

Oneonta Gorge in Oregon.

This river claimed the life of my Canon 5D mkII in 2013 but still I’m drawn to it’s beauty. You’ll always find something new and worth photographing at this cinematic location. Read my Oneonta Gorge Photo tips.

Panther Creek Falls - Oregon Photo Workshop

Panther Creek Falls, Washington

One of the most stunning cascades on the planet. To get this shot you need to perform a dangerous bum shuffle on the fallen tree that spans the creek. If you slip and fall it’s game over. Read my Panther Creek Photo Tips.

Punchbowl Falls - Oregon photography Workshop

Punchbowl Falls, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon.

You’re pretty much guaranteed to get awesome pictures at any time of year but in the autumn you’ll get powerful light rays and steam if you pick a bright sunny day. I take my students there during my Oregon Photo Workshop in Fall.

Castle Photography Workshop in Scotland

Castle Morton – Scotland

Complete with it’s own small lake that features spring time foxgloves and a romantic swan couple, this ancient castle ruin in Western Scotland was a great side trip while visiting my family.

Scottish Photo Workshop Fototripper

 Crichope Linn – Scotland

Like many historic places in Scotland, the Crichope Linn canyon in Dumfries and Galloway is said to harbour supernatural beings. All I can tell you is that I felt completely natural is I stood tatties deep in this frigid water.

elkford-falls-gavin-hardcastle

Secret Falls – Vancouver Island

This is a secret location near Port Alberni on Vancouver Island. While tucking into a 3 scoop chocolate ice cream at the Coombs Country Candy shop in the spring, I got chatting to a local couple who were kind enough to share this secret location with me. I didn’t expect much but was delighted when I got there to find this. I’ll only share this delightful spot with my workshop students 😉

collosus

Avatar Grove – AKA ”Gnarliest Tree in Canada”

The secrets out about Avatar Grove in Port Renfrew. Yesterday I counted 13 cars parked outside the entrance and witnessed no less than 100 people troupe into the forest over about 3 hours.

emerald-pools

Emerald Pools – Cowichan Valley – Vancouver Island

Another secret location shown to me my a steelhead fisherman who made me swear not to divulge lest he loose his coveted fishing spot to other fisherman.

mystic-beach-waterfall-sooke-vancouver-island

Mystic Beach – Vancouver Island

The shots above and below are from the lovely Mystic Beach in Sooke. I was lucky to get a fog free summer afternoon but winter is usually the best time as there is less fog and the waterfall that runs into the Pacific ocean is much heavier.

vancouveri-island-photo-tours-mystic-beach

moss

Sooke Potholes – Vancouver Island

This is actually just a runoff stream from a drain that runs under a bridge to the camp site at Sooke potholes. Sometimes the prettiest spots aren’t always the famous ones.

stocking-freeze

Stocking Creek Park – Vancouver Island

This shot took some planning. I kept checking the forecast during our first big freeze of the year and held out until the 4th day of -6 temperatures created the ideal conditions.

Aurora in Parksville

Aurora in Parksville – Vancouver Island

This shot caused something of a stir when posted on the Hello BC Facebook page with some locals telling me flat out that the aurora can’t be seen this far South and never in summer. We’ll I’m here to tell you that it can.

Vicotria BC, Inner Harbour

Victoria, BC – Inner Harbour

As summer moves into Fall and the crowds start to thin, the moon rises over the Empress in the inner harbour of the BC capital.

Landslide Lake - Strathcona Park

Landslide Like, Strathcona Park, Vancouver Island

This one requires some blisters. In total it’s about 8 hours of hiking to get to and from this glacier fed lake in Strathcona Park on Vancouver Island. Summer is the best time to go if you want the emerald glow in the water.

Green River Overlook

The Green River Overlook – Moab, Utah

Near the town of Moab, this is one of my favourite views of the Green River. If you’re lucky enough to get a good sunset all you’ve got to do is show up and shoot.

Garden of Eden, Moab, Utah

Garden of Eden, Arches National Park

For some reason, most photographers tend to ignore this brilliant location in favour of Balanced Rock or the Windows Section of Arches National Park in Moab, Utah. I had such a fun time with my group in October and this was shot during a 5 minute window at sunset.

Brown River Falls, Courtenay, BC

Brown River Falls, Courtenay, BC

One of the few rivers that didn’t dry to a trickle this long summer. I can’t wait until the next big freeze to capture this scene in its semi frozen beauty.

Caerlaverock Castle, Scotland

Caerlaverock Castle – Scotland

My spring time visit to Scotland was blessed with ideal weather and these heavy rain clouds that wandered into my shot of Caerlaverock Castle added a much needed touch of drama.

Botanical Beach, Port Renfrew

Botanical Beach, Port Renfrew, Vancouver Island

This sunset shot from yesterday was the ideal end to a wonderful year of landscape photography. Botanical Beach is a perfect example of the rugged West coast of Vancouver Island. Pounding Pacific waves create sea stacks and tide pools that were made for photographers.

Vancouver Island 4K

And finally, if you haven’t yet seen the film that took me four months to shoot, please hit play and feel free to share.

Published by Gavin Hardcastle

Gavin is a professional landscape photographer from Nanaimo, Vancouver Island, BC. He teaches photography workshops all over the world and writes extensively about his experiences on location. You can read his photo guides and tutorials here at Fototripper.com.

13 Comments

  1. Hi Gavin,

    Thank you for sharing this stunning collection of images. You certainly have visited some of the most incredibly beautiful places and done them justice with some breathtaking images. What I appreciate most is the relatively (for today) natural feel to your published images. I’ve yet so see one that looks over-processed at all.
    The most important thing to me however, is the simple gift of being able to see these places in person, at that time.
    Best wishes for 2015.
    Regards,
    Paul

    Reply
  2. Great stuff, love it!

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  3. Thank you Gavin, for sharing your extraordinary adventures. Your work remains truly inspiring.
    You had an awesome year for sure. I’m glad we had a chance to meet with your visit to the Langley Camera Club and again it was a pleasure and I thank you for being a judge at our FVI (Fraser Valley Invitational) … it was all good!!

    Wishing you and yours all the best for an even more inspired 2015 filled with new adventures, light, love with the people in your life and boundless beauty to capture!!

    Happy New Year!!

    Best regards,
    Joy Gerow

    Reply
  4. Hi Gavin and Pops, what a beautiful overview of 2014, and thank you two for letting John and I experience a great lifetime adventure with you in Oregon. I wish you two and the family a wonderful and safe New Year, bill

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  5. Hi Gavin, fabulous shots and a wonderful montage you have presented us! Thanks so much for your help this year, your workshops are as top notch as your art. Happy shooting and great light in the new year. Debra

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  6. Gorgeous shots, Gavin! Clearly I need to hang around eating ice cream in Coombs more frequently to learn about some great sites for photography on the island!

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  7. Wonderful pics, makes me want to get out more……..!

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  8. I face booked you about getting some training one on one. I have to apply for grant money. I need to improve my photography for my job. sweet, Hey I am in Qualicum. not sure how long I would need? 250-752-6339

    Reply
  9. Hi again, avin. Loved this article, and your work is very nice. I have a ways to go before I am at your level, but then again I shoot part time, and teach elementary students full time! The video at teh end was extraordinary! Thanks for sharing your work!

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  10. Absolutely stunning images Gavin. I’m especially fond of the ones you’ve taken of Vancouver Island. I’ve lived on the island for pretty much my entire life (I am 16 now) and pretty much all of these places you’ve photographed I haven’t been yet! There is so much to explore. I am super excited to get my N so I can see all the gems of the island.

    Beautiful video too btw! You are seriously skilled with the dynamic look you have in your images and time lapses.

    Reply

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