Photos are at

I’ve been taking pictures for more than forty years now, and even, briefly, made a living at it.    In the beginning – and for at least a decade before I actually bought my first camera from Toronto Camera in October 1973 – I was fascinated by cameras as neat toys and “photographer” as a cool occupation.  Trying to use a friendly pro’s Leica M4 showed me that there was a lot more to it. Taking even passable photographs (then) took some real skill.  Subsequently, trying to do better with my own, more flexible and automated Olympus OM-1 taught me that taking good pictures takes real effort and ability and really good ones, much more of both, coupled with real vision.

Today’s cameras make taking acceptable pictures almost effortless. Even fairly good ones are possible with a little persistence and effort.  This makes for a world flooded with images of cute pussycats and too, too many other things whose beauty and interest is mainly, even entirely in the eye of the beholder.  Cell phones, cheap point-and-shoots and countless more serious/expensive camera models churn out billions of snapshot images of all and sundry, adjusting exposure and focus and even optimizing these for particular subjects automatically.  Images are snapped at at virtually machine-gun speed, playing the odds that one or two of the dozens, even hundreds, will be worth posting, perhaps even printing.

The sharp, well-exposed snapshot images digital cameras produce are seductive, especially on the screen.  I’ve taken tens of thousands of them, and some, especially when carefully processed, do seem to be worth sharing electronically.   I’ve posted these on my website and also at,

Some of the best, printed on interesting papers and framed even seemed decent enough to show at the Meewasin Valley Authority Centre, the Gallery of the Bridges and Amigos Cantina last year.

But really good  pictures still require care and patient effort guided by real vision.   Ansel Adams would spend a day taking one.  After firing away with digital cameras for a decade, I’ve   just managed to find a mint Olympus OM 4Ti film camera on E-bay.   Will I be able make decent pictures when I have only a single, or perhaps a couple of chances  to get everything right, have to wait a week or more for the results, and can’t change white balance or tweak exposure or sharpness?  In a couple of weeks, the camera will get here.   Using it will be a challenge indeed!



Seymour Island Galapagos Dec 2005                     Mount Haleakala, Maui, Hawaii, Nov 2007


Vancouver Island, with Gina, July 2012.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    dpwinterPC265153b

                   Saskatoon summer   +30C                                         Saskatoon winter -30C

Erich (Bert) Keser

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