Heading North

In Craft & Vision, Emily and I, News & Stuff, Travel by David27 Comments

On September 05 I head to Vancouver Island to pick up my friend Al Smith and his Jeep. Together the 4 of us (two guys, two Jeeps) head up to the far north of Vancouver Island to Port Hardy. From there we catch the ferry to Prince Rupert and drive north towards Whitehorse, the capital of Canada’s Yukon Territory, then further north to Dawson City, the heart of the Klondike Gold Rush. Then we push further north, picking up the infamous Dempster Highway and taking it as far as we can, across the Arctic Circle, and into the Northwest Territories, finally ending up in Inuvik (N68 W133), the furthest point north we can reach before winter when the Dempster becomes an ice-highway that’s impassable for three months of the year because, well, it’s just water then.  We’ll be gone for 3 weeks. Along the way we’ll be shooting the adventure with a set of Jeep-mounted Go-Pro cameras, and a couple Pelican cases full of gear. It’s been a while since I just pursued my own work and I’m excited to get into the arctic to swat mosquitoes and see where the muses lead.

In the meantime, lots happening here. We just wrapped the first Vancouver Gathering, a weekend for creative photographers, and we packed the studio with 20 wonderful people from all over North America. I had a blast, made some new friends, and can’t wait for the next one. It’s sold-out too, but we’re already making plans for Gatherings in 2013.

Next week we launch a completely new website. PixelatedImage is giving way to DavidduChemin.com, though the old address will still work. It’ll be a new look with some easier functionality, a print store, and a flash-free portfolio that functions nicely on mobile devices. You don’t need to know this, because you’ll just show up one day and it’ll all be new. But I thought you deserved a warning. 🙂

Also next week we celebrate 3 years of Craft & Vision. There’s some exciting news and some prizes to give away and for three days only some great discounts.

Finally, in two weeks, on the day I leave for the arctic trip, we launch my next eBook. It’s called Portraits of Earth, An Introduction to Landscape Photography. It’s large (90 spreads), beautiful, and packed with images and lessons learned while shooting on 7 continents over the last few years. Can’t wait to show it to you.


  1. That will be an awesome trip David. Planning to do something like this in 2013. I was in the Yukon in Sept 2009 for autumn colours along the Dempster Hwy and Tombstone Territorial Park, amazing place. I was inspired to visit when I saw some of the photos from Darwin Wiggett.

    I never did make it to Inuvik but plan to do so next year.

    Travel safe. I remembered this sign on the Dempster:
    “There are no emergency medical services on the Yukon section of the Dempster Highway”.

    When looking for a photo of the sign, found the Arctic Jeep Expedition:
    Quite the coincidence 🙂

  2. I did this trip with my wife in 2005, starting from Whitehorse. It was incredible, and I can’t wait to go back someday. I think that trekking around up there with my trusty Canon A80 is what really sparked my interest in photography.

  3. David, Great trip. I will echo the wish I were there sentiment. Polar bears will be moving toward sea waiting for the sea to freeze. Might be a bit early, but Kaktovik AK (short flight) is a great spot – Inuits harvest whale and bears feed on carcass while waiting. Unforgettable experience.

  4. Enjoy the trip. I hope you post a lot of pictures and write ups about the trip. A trip like that is something that has been on my list for far too long.

  5. looking forward to the EBook and really glad you will get a long personal tour of amazing open spaces. Hope you will bring back some amazing thoughts and images to share

  6. Re mosquitos: a tablespoon of brewer’s yeast in your OJ every morning will keep them away … it’s what my logging friends in Pemberton use. Gives the juice a nutty flavor. Safe travels … looking forward to hearing about the trip.

  7. I appreciate how transparently you live out the intentional life you pursue! On many levels, it is inspiring… ‘go and do’, David, and tell us all about it!

  8. Have a great run David.
    Just back from shipping out of Port Hardy to Bella Coola (via Northern CA). Explored east from there and surprised at the desert landscapes I found.

  9. Have a great trip David. I super excited for the next ebook. Would you consider doing a gathering in Toronto in the coming year?

  10. Hey David,

    Sounds like a great adventure. Wouldn’t be complete without a Hassy and some films in one of those pelican’s!! Ca-thunk.


  11. So excited about your adventure. A friend and I drove up the Demptster to Inuvik years ago – beautiful time of year to go!!! You’ll get some beautiful shots of the Tombstones! So jealous!

  12. There’s something magical about being to the Arctic Circle. I’ll bet it’s going to be an amazing trip.

  13. David: I have been twice to the Arctic Circle by the same route you are planning. Last time we drove to Inuvik and then did a 4 hour flight to Tuk (basically so I could put my feet in the Arctic Ocean). Both trips were amazing and I know you will completely enjoy it. EVERY Canadian needs to see our part of the Arctic. It is beautiful. Our next plan is to head up in Winter and drive the ice road to Tuk.
    Have a wonderful, safe trip.

  14. Really looking forward to the book – it’s always a pleasure to see well chosen photographs along with your easy and educational descriptions.

  15. Nothing like an epic Jeep trip! I’m planning on heading north in September as well. Banff and Jasper mostly. Any tips on shooting these parks? I’m from Utah and have never been to Canada. So excited though!

  16. Hi David. It’s a shame we never met, because your posts always come at a time that can only mean our thoughts are connected somehow. In this case it’s the subject of heading North.

    Looking forward from your shots and of of course your insights.

    If you’re passing through Ontario anytime in the future, be sure to check out Manitoulin Island. I just posted some shots from a short vacation we took there. If you get a minute to check them out, please do.

    Best of travels

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