Memoir shares Artist’s Personal Journey

InFocus 2017 Photographer Al Dixon

To continue with guest blog posts by InFocus 2017 photographers, I am pleased to introduce Al Dixon. Al has been with InFocus since the beginning and his landscape images reveal he is a man of patience and skill. As InFocus is quickly approaching, I love peering into the creative practices of these photographers. It is inspiring to say the least. I’m sure you will feel the same after reading Al’s words. On that note, away we go!



A picture is worth a thousand words.  Yes, that’s oh so ‘tre cliche’, yet it’s a mantra that many photographers and other visual creatives live by.  We strive to create images that resonate with our audience by capturing their imagination, evoking emotions & feelings, or spurring conversations.  Along with a level of technical mastery & a certain visual appeal, these are the hallmarks of an exceptional image.  We each have our own reasons as to why we embark on these creative journeys.  For me it starts as a stress reliever.  After that, the mixture of art & technology provides outlets for both my Inner Artist & Inner Nerd.  Surprisingly, when we start to forget these reasons we seem to be able to produce an image reminding us of them just in time.

Windy Point by Al Dixon

It wasn’t until after first posting “Sunset at Abraham” online and receiving feedback that I saw the image in a totally different manner.  Having shot the image with an exposure of 4 minutes, the chaos and raw power of the location had been greatly mellowed and refined.  Many that know the area commented that they had never seen Windy Point so calm and tranquil.  Thinking back on the evening I created the image, I could recall sitting on the rocks with little doubt in my mind as to how the location had received its name.  While strong winds attempted to toss photographer and gear into the lake, powerful gusts buffeted the tripod threatening the dreaded camera shake.  Waves were crashing on the rocks below, creating spray that clambered to find purchase upon my filters and lens.  What I didn’t realize at the time was that while I was aware of all this chaos, confusion, and distractions; not once did any of it interfere with the mission I was on.  The image my Inner Artist intended to capture was clear in his mind, my Inner Nerd contently performed filter exposure calculations in his head, and I sat on that cold wet rock completely and totally at peace.

Sunset at Abraham by Al Dixon

All it takes now is but a moments glance at that image to remind me of the simple joy the art of photography has brought into my life.  While the stress of the daily grind may seem over bearing at times, immersing myself in creating images can make all of that go away.  It rekindles the memories of ‘borrowing’ my parent’s camera as a child, countless hours in the darkroom throughout high school, and countless photo excursions with my daughter.  These simple joys had been fading over the past few years; but thanks to a cold, wet, windy evening they are here to stay.


Where Al hangs his hat online:



Twitter: @Al_D_Photo

Instagram:  @Al_D_Photo

InFocus 2017 Photographer Hedy Bach

I love sharing the work of other talented artists, writers, musicians and, of course, photographers. Today is a special guest post by one of the 2017 InFocus Photo photographers. I am pleased to introduce Hedy Bach! I first got to know Hedy and her photography two years ago when she submitted and showed her photography at our 2015 InFocus Photo Exhibit and Award. Hedy is a “sloppy Buddhist” and an inspirational woman in the arts. Below you will find a unique guest blog post, entirely in poem, writing about photography. On that note, I pass this post over to Hedy!



i photograph daily

i write daily

i upload images daily

i use adobe lightroom & photo apps

and i try to work mainly in camera


i play with my fujx100s & iphone 6

rarely do i go anywhere without a camera

i like small carry-around cameras

ones i can wear like a necklace

i like to feel obscure

i appreciate tripods but rarely use them


in 2011 i began to photograph with intention

before that i made snapshots

as a girl i was always looking

i learned about the surveyed and surveyors

i studied the place of the photograph

i became a visual researcher

i taught fine arts curriculum to education students

and as a researcher i worked with images and story

social justice issues, human rights, and visual ethics matter deeply to me



line up ~ Edmonton, Alberta ~ 2016 by Hedy Bach


when i started my blog

i wanted to compose posts with my images

i wanted to be behind a camera

try another way of visual story telling

every day i began to photograph beauty with intention

beauty that can be consoling, disturbing, sacred, profane;

it can be exhilarating, appealing, inspiring, chilling.


couple ~ Edmonton, Alberta ~ 2016 by Hedy Bach


i’m self-taught

i learn from









poets, etc.


mostly i learn along the way

i love



in ordinary everyday life

i am a member of two local photography clubs

i attend workshops, talks and competitions

i take free on line learning

i have one to one lessons with photography friends

i continue learning about the taking and making of photography.



resting ~ Lisbon, Portugal ~ 2016 by Hedy Bach


i enjoy street photography

i like people

i like walking and talking with people

it’s enlivening

and i love wandering urban environments



open ~ Dorothy, Alberta ~ 2016 by Hedy Bach


i also love to be alone

walk my dogs

in early mornings just after dark

my magic hour

i love the land

being outside

in a room without a roof



Physalis peruviana ~ Edmonton, Alberta ~ 2016 by Hedy Bach


i photograph in my home

i don’t need to be away to find beauty

of course i enjoy being in front of something different

being in various spaces and places

i am grateful for the opportunities that having a camera has given me.



by hedy


me elsewhere




hedy bach;s alberta


Hedy Bach’s Street Photography: A verb…


Hedy Bach


3 Days Left to Vote! InFocus People's Choice Award

I am proud to announce that Vistek is the new sponsor for the InFocus Peolple’s Choice Award. The voting is going fabulously – and boy, what a tight race to first place! There are only three more days to vote for your favorite photograph and photographer. With one vote per day per household, if you want your choice to win, now is the time to spread the word. Tell your friends and family. We have so many amazing photographers that want your vote. Now is the time!

Vistek_ InFocus Photo Exhibit Peoples Choice Award

We will announce the winner of the InFocus People’s Choice Award at the opening reception. This will take place during the Curator Talk.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Opening Reception: 6 – 9 PM

Curator Talk: 7 PM

dc3 Art Projects

10567 – 111 Street
Edmonton, AB, Canada
T5H 3E8

2016-INVITE-back-012 done 150dpi dc3

Please RSVP to the opening reception on Facebook by clicking here or via email

You can find InFocus Photo Exhibit listed with Exposure Photography Festival’s events. Click here to see what other photography events are taking place during the month of February.

Alexis Marie Chute InFocus Photo Exhibit Global News 02 blog

This morning, bright and early, I spoke about InFocus Photo Exhibit and the People’s Choice Award on the Global Morning News. As always, I am so proud to share about this exhibit which means so much to me. The InFocus photographers are a super talented bunch! Once the interview is ready, I will share the video here – just in case you weren’t tuned in at 6:40 AM!

Alexis Marie Chute InFocus Photo Exhibit Global News 04 blog Alexis Marie Chute InFocus Photo Exhibit Global News 03 blog

Don’t forget to vote!

15 Days till the InFocus 2016 Deadline & 15 Reasons to Submit

The deadline for Alberta photographers to submit photographs to InFocus Exhibit 2016 is October 31, 2015, only 15 days away! Now is not the time for procrastination; SUBMIT TODAY!

The mission of InFocus is to promote and exhibit innovative, thoughtful, and provocative photography created by Alberta’s contemporary image makers.

The call for submissions is open to professionals, armatures and students alike. We want to see forward thinking photography that capitalizes on the strengths and subtleties of the medium and takes image-making to a new level. The goal is to exhibit the best photography from the province!

Here are 15 reasons you should submit to InFocus 2016:

  1. See your photography hung in DC3 Art Projects, one of Edmonton’s most important artistic hubs.
  2. Your work will be featured in Exposure Photography Festival, which went province-wide for the first time last year.
  3. Sell your work during InFocus. The gallery and InFocus Team will encourage art patrons to support photographers and our creative community in this way.
  4. Network with other photographers and professionals during the festival.
  5. Participation in an exciting group exhibition is a fun way to kick off 2016.
  6. Discover other image-makers from across Alberta and find a creative community.
  7. Have something cool to talk about on Facebook and Twitter other than what you had for breakfast (Although we’re sure it was delicious!).
  8. Snatch up a volunteer opportunity with InFocus Exhibit 2016 to gain experience mounting and running an exhibition.
  9. Attend a rockin’ reception party on Thursday, February 4, 2015 (7-10pm) with live music, wine and yummy snacks (and invite your family and friends!).
  10. Have your work discussed for its merits and inclusion in the show during the Curator Talk on Thursday, February 4, 2015 at 7:30pm in the gallery.
  11. It’s easy to submit your work online through our no fuss submission form.
  12. Each photographer’s Artist Statement and CV will be displayed at the exhibit to educate the visitors about your work.
  13. Have a lasting keepsake in the printed InFocus Photo Exhibit program with each photographer featured.
  14. If you entered before October 18, you have the chance to have one of your images featured in the Exposure Photography Festival magazine-style catalogue to represent InFocus!
  15. Photography is awesome!

InFocus Edmonton 2015 Alexis Marie Chute artist curator photography 03 blog

Submit to InFocus Photo Exhibit by clicking here. Deadline October 31, 2015!

Like InFocus Photo Exhibit on Facebook.

Follow InFocus Photo on Twitter.

New Paintings at the AR&S Gallery

New Alexis Marie Chute Abstract Paintings at the AR&S Gallery at the Art Gallery of Alberta

I have 5 new colourful abstract paintings at the AR&S Gallery at the Art Gallery of Alberta. Up to a few weeks ago, all my art they had in stock was either sold or rented. The painting series they represent are bold, colourful and energetic. I’m looking forward to my new work, created in 2015, finding happy homes in professional and private locations.

Here are the new paintings:

“Fold” 2015  72″ x 60"  Acrylic on canvas  © Alexis Marie Chute

“Fold” 2015
72″ x 60″
Acrylic on canvas
© Alexis Marie Chute

“Expanse” 2015 16″ x 20″ Acrylic on canvas © Alexis Marie Chute

“Expanse” 2015
16″ x 20″
Acrylic on canvas
© Alexis Marie Chute

“Earth” 2015 16″ x 20″ Acrylic on canvas © Alexis Marie Chute

“Earth” 2015
16″ x 20″
Acrylic on canvas
© Alexis Marie Chute

“Happy” 2015 24″ x 36″ Acrylic on canvas © Alexis Marie Chute

“Happy” 2015
24″ x 36″
Acrylic on canvas
© Alexis Marie Chute

“Easy Going” 2015 24″ x 36″ Acrylic on canvas © Alexis Marie Chute

“Easy Going” 2015
24″ x 36″
Acrylic on canvas
© Alexis Marie Chute

To view all my work at the AR&S Gallery at the Art Gallery of Alberta, please click here.

InFocus Exhibit 2016 Photo Submission Q&A

Do you have questions about InFocus Photo Exhibit 2016? We have answers. If you don’t find the answer you are looking for below, please send us an email to, with the subject line: “Question about InFocus 2016.”


InFocus Exhibit 2016 Photo Submission Q&A

Is there a theme for the InFocus Exhibit?

There is no theme or categories for the exhibition. It is an open-theme show which means you may submit photographs of any subject you like. The goal of InFocus is to exhibit the best work by Alberta photographers.

Is there a limit to the number of photographs I can submit?

No. You can submit as many photographic images as you’d like. The cost to enter is $25 per three images. If you want to enter more than three, you may do so in a subsequent entry.

Am I guaranteed to be included in the exhibition?

No. As the goal of InFocus Photo Exhibit is to show the best work from Alberta, and also the fact that our space is limited, only a select number of photographs and photographers will be included. Even if your work is not selected, it may just mean we ran out of space and we strongly encourage you to submit again next year.

Who can submit to InFocus?

Anyone living in Alberta may submit. The competition is open to professionals, amateurs, students and young people.

How will the photographs and photographers be selected?

InFocus is curated by Alexis Marie Chute, BFA, MFA. She will select the images for inclusion from all submissions. She is looking for high quality photography that exhibits the talent and interests of our creative community. Alexis Marie won the prestigious John Poole Award for Promotion of the Arts in 2015 for her work with the inaugural InFocus Exhibit that same year.

Where will the photographs be displayed?

InFocus will be hung in the Edmonton based commercial gallery DC3 Art Projects.

Why is it important that InFocus is a part of Exposure Photography Festival?

2015 was the first year Exposure Photo Festival was province wide. In the past, Exposure only included Calgary, Banff and Canmore. Celebrating the creativity of our entire province sets the bar high and is a strong platform to promote local talent and launch emerging photographers.

When will the exhibition take place?

InFocus will be open to the public for viewing during the DC3 Art Projects gallery hours throughout the entire month of February, 2016. Gallery hours: Wednesdays 12 – 5 pm, Thursdays 12 – 8 pm, Fridays 12 – 5 pm, and Saturdays 11 – 5:30 pm. Other times by appointment.

What is the deadline to submit to InFocus Photo Exhibit?

To be considered for the featured image to represent InFocus in the Exposure magazine, the deadline is OCTOBER 15, 2015. The call for submissions for InFocus will officially close on OCTOBER 31, 2015. Please submit early.

What is the schedule of when photographers will be notified, and when I would need to drop off my work and pick it up?

Please see the official call for submissions page for the InFocus Photo Exhibit schedule.

Do I need to resize my files for submission?

Yes. Please see the InFocus Photo Exhibit technical details on the official call for submissions page.

Does my photograph(s) need to be framed to be accepted?

Your images must be prepared in a professional manner for exhibition. What that means is that they need to be printed at a high quality and either professionally framed or printed on canvas and stretched. No decorative or multi-coloured frames will be accepted. All photographs must be wired for easy hanging. Any work accepted for the exhibition but then delivered without the above listed standards, will be disqualified from the exhibition.

What do you recommend for framing?

Professional framing is always best but professional quality consumer frames will also be accepted. There must be real glass or non-glare Plexiglas, not plastic, used in the framing. Simple black/white/wood frames with mated images are a classic way to present your photograph(s). Please note the type of framing/presentation method chosen when submitting your work.

How much mating should I have around my photographs?

The size of the mat is personal preference and also a consideration of style and impact. It can be visually catching to have a smaller image with a large mat, or no mat around a photograph in a simple frame, for example. Generally, a minimum of two inches of mat around an image will give the photograph room to breathe.

Do you accept mixed media art?

We will accept mixed media art as long as the primary medium is photography. If you have questions about your specific piece, please email Alexis Marie Chute:

What size should I make my photographs for the exhibition?

This is up to you. If you are flexible regarding the size you print your image(s) for the exhibition, please note this in your submission form. Depending on space factors and the number of works to be shown, extremely large photographs may not fit – but this is where the curatorial magic comes in. At the end of the day, size your images to match your vision. Please state the image printed size and the final framing size in your submission.

Why do I need to submit my CV and artist statement?

This information will be printed and available for viewers of the exhibition. This information is often of interest to visitors wishing to purchase a photograph. Things to list on your artist CV that relate to you as a photographer: education, classes, exhibitions, publications, collaborations, memberships, volunteering, grants, etc. If you do not have anything to list in these categories – that’s okay! Maybe InFocus will be your first accolade on your new photography CV. If you do not submit a CV, that is totally fine. Please remember to put your NAME on all word or pdf documents submitted.

What is important to include is your artist statement: This can be as short as a few sentences to a few paragraphs. In your artist statement you can talk about how you got interested in photography, how you take your photographs, why photography is important to you and the meaning behind your work.

Can I submit a series of photographs?

Yes. The whole series may be accepted or only one image, depending on space.

Why is there a fee to submit?

InFocus Photo Exhibit is a volunteer effort and labor of love by the InFocus Team. The fee to submit your photographs goes to the practical aspects of mounting the exhibition. Such expenses include: listing the exhibition in the Exposure magazine, advertising the show, marketing & PR, printing invitations and posters, venue insurance, reception party snacks and wine, small printed programs for the show, web and domain hosting, and competitions.

How do you accept payment?

Payment is made by PayPal, either by a PayPal account or through their system using a credit card. You do not need a PayPal account to pay by PayPal.

Can I sell my photograph(s) displayed during InFocus Photo Exhibit?

Yes! One of the goals of InFocus is to support our local creative talent. All photographers will earn 50% from their sale of their work, as per standard commercial gallery commissions. Gallery staff and InFocus volunteers will strive to sell the photographer’s work and will provide interested buyers with the photographer’s contact information and purchase details.

How can I volunteer for InFocus Photo Exhibit?

InFocus has many volunteer opportunities including: hanging and striking the show, distributing the call for submissions and exhibition posters, manning the show, and setting up for and clean up after the reception, for example. If you would like to sign up to volunteer, first of all: THANK YOU! Please contact Alexis Marie to be added to our volunteer list:

How should I price my photograph(s)?

This is a personal decision. Some things to consider: printing costs, framing costs and your own value as a photographer (your worth should never underestimate yourself). Think about what price you are comfortable selling your work. Please do not value your work too low. If your photography is accepted into InFocus, you may discuss the price with the curator at that time.

What should I list for the date and medium of my photographs?

The date should be listed as the year the image was made. The medium can be something to the effect of “Photograph” or “Photograph on aluminum” or “Mixed-medium Photograph” or “Giclée print” for example.

What is the Curator Talk?

At 7:30pm on Thursday, February 4, 2016, curator Alexis Marie Chute will discuss the ideas and importance behind InFocus Photo Exhibit and Alberta photography, as well share about the images and photographers selected for the show.

When is the reception party taking place?

The InFocus Photo Exhibit opening reception (party!) is on Thursday, February 4, 2016, from 7 – 10pm. There will be live music, snacks and drinks. If you would like an invitation to the reception party, please send your mailing address to RSVP please to help the InFocus Team. All photographers are encouraged to attend and invite their family and friends. It is going to be a great night!



If you have questions not addressed here, please email and you will receive timely answers. Odds are that if you are wondering, others are as well.

Best wishes for submitting to InFocus Photo Exhibit! We look forward to seeing your work!

Click here to read the InFocus Photo Exhibit Call for Submissions.

Click here to Submit to InFocus Photo Exhibit.

Like InFocus on Facebook.

Follow us on Twitter: @InfocusPhotoCAN



The InFocus Call for Submissions Opens August 1

InFocus is a celebration of the best in contemporary photography. It is an exhibition and celebration I am honoured to curate, bringing attention to noteworthy image-makers and their work. Last year, InFocus set out to showcase the top photographers from Edmonton. This year, we have expanded the region to include all of Alberta. The bar will be set high as we welcome images from across our diverse province this summer and fall during our call for submissions.

INFOCUS 2016 LOGO large Alexis Marie Chute Art line

The InFocus exhibition will run the month of February 2016 during Exposure Photography Festival. Photographs selected for InFocus will be exhibited in DC3 Art Projects, a commercial gallery in Edmonton. I am so glad DC3 Art Projects has come on board so our exhibition will run the whole month of February and display the photographers work in such a beautiful space.

InFocus is a great opportunity for photographers! The call for submissions opens on August 1, 2015. I hope you will submit.

Please click here for more information about InFocus.

Subscribe to this blog to receive updates on InFocus.

Robert Pohl Photography: Special Guest Post

Alexis Marie: I have loved sharing the stories and inspirations of some truly interesting individuals during the InFocus Alumni photography blog series. Are you excited about InFocus 2016? We will soon release the call for submissions and we would love to see your work. For now, I’m pleased to introduce Robert Pohl, a modern photographer engaging traditional processes.

Welcome Robert!




"Piano" copyright Robert Pohl

“Piano” copyright Robert Pohl

My name is Rob Pohl.  I was born in Edmonton over half a century ago and have lived here my entire life.  I’ve been photographing the area specifically, but the world in general for about 35 years.  I started out shooting film, and have stayed with it.  I spend my working days in an office staring at a computer monitor.  When I want to escape from that world and immerse myself in my photography, the last thing I want to do is spend yet more hours staring at a stupid monitor. While the masses have embraced digital photography and image manipulation software, I continue to work with film and traditional wet photography.   I enjoy the relaxation and escape of the darkroom, the mixing of the chemistry, the experimentation, and the process of creating something with my hands.  I shoot black and white film and process and print everything myself.  In this age of digital photography that makes me a dinosaur.  But I also think that it sets me apart from the masses that blast away with digital cameras.  My approach is much more methodical and measured and I try to make every shot count.

"Schoolhouse" copyright Robert Pohl

“Schoolhouse” copyright Robert Pohl

Most of my work is shot with a large format 4″ x 5″ view camera.  A dabble a little with medium format roll film, and with the even larger 8″ x 10″ format.  I shoot mostly landscapes, landscape details, and historical images.  It disturbs me somewhat that our province is falling victim to massive population growth and extensive development.  Mankind seems too wrapped up in economic growth and development and seems to place little value on the natural world, and a responsibility to our planet.  We all need to step back and take a deep breath and garner a little appreciation for the world around us, and what our lifestyle is doing to it.  Hopefully my imagery helps to illustrate an appreciation for where we have come from, where we are going, and what the consequences are.

"Rock Pool" copyright Robert Pohl

“Rock Pool” copyright Robert Pohl

In early 2015 I became involved in the InFocus Photography Exhibition that has expanded from Calgary and Banff, to the provincial level.  The YEG show in Edmonton that I was involved in was curated by Alexis Marie Chute.  I felt privileged to be included in that show, and hope to take part in future exhibitions.  I’ve included a selection of images that are typical of my work.  I regularly post work to my Flickr account, and to my blog…


Gerry Dotto Photography: Special Guest Post

Alexis Marie: Continuing on in the InFocus Alumni photography blog series, I am pleased to introduce Gerry Dotto. Taking the everyday and making it interesting is quite a feat. I hope you enjoy Gerry’s images and the way he expounds on them.

Welcome Gerry!




On a recent trip to Boston, I visited the Museum of Fine Arts to see an exhibition of works by two historically prominent photographers: Herb Ritts and Gordon Parks. It was a great show, and the impact of seeing iconic photos up close and in person really left an impression. This experience truly underscores the importance of getting one’s photographs printed and, if the occasion arises, put on display. It’s one thing to look at a digital image on the screen, but it’s no comparison to a well-printed photograph that allows you to truly appreciate the tone, the light and the detail.


copyright Gerry Dotto

“Stickers or Stamps, Crutches or Stilts” 2014, Digital print on photo paper 22” x 17” (55.9 x 43.2 cm) image size Edition of 30, copyright Gerry Dotto

I recently had the opportunity to participate in the InFocus Edmonton exhibition, where I showed a photo from a series I’ve been developing called “Flow of Traffic Theory.” My work is conceptual in nature and is based on exploring our interaction with everyday forms of visual communication. This series originated from my fascination with the simplicity and universality of the imagery used on road signs. Specifically, signs whose words and symbols have become obscured or distorted in some way.


Peach Inspediment - Composite 1, 2014, Digital print on photo paper, 22” x 16” (55.9 x 40.6 cm) image size, Edition of 30, Copyright Gerry Dotto

Peach Inspediment – Composite 1, 2014,
Digital print on photo paper, 22” x 16” (55.9 x 40.6 cm) image size, Edition of 30, Copyright Gerry Dotto

Over the course of the last several years, I’ve kept a keen eye out for road signs that have been damaged, run over, victims of adverse weather or compromised by construction. The interesting thing is that these signs are generally overlooked by drivers—no need to look at a sign that can’t be read. The signs, in effect, become “invisible.” The value of these signs, relative to the message they once carried, has been lost. They now take on an aesthetic value of their own, either in their appearance, the reinterpretation of their message or based on the context of their physical location. The images in this series set out to reveal the relative beauty of these objects that have lost their inherent value.


"Red Cross" 2012, Digital print on photo paper, 22” x 15.5” (55.9 x 39.4 cm) image size, edition of 30, Copyright Gerry Dotto

“Red Cross” 2012, Digital print on photo paper, 22” x 15.5” (55.9 x 39.4 cm) image size, edition of 30, Copyright Gerry Dotto

During the run of the InFocus Edmonton exhibition, I met a few photographers whose work I was familiar with but hadn’t had the occasion to meet yet. Seeing my work in relation to theirs, as well as other photos in the show, fostered some new perspectives on how I approached my own picture making. I realized that many of my photos of road signs were taking on human characteristics, in the sense that I was portraying them like they were portraits of people—people wearing masks. What are they hiding? Is it about insecurity? A secret identity? Is it a game? In the end, these photos offer more questions than answers.


Ultimately, photography is a medium about “showing” what’s in our world and, in theory, it captures “truth.” The photographic print remains the best medium for revealing the photographer’s vision. Personally, I benefitted from this exhibition experience when deeper aspects of my own work were revealed to me. While I set out to show the world my vision, I’m hiding from it, too. You can see more of my work on my website,, or contact me at