A masked dancer, a wary fox, a packed qamutiq and a porchlight in a blizzard: these winning images reveal the exceptional nature of the North in a series of beautiful and haunting scenes.
WINNER (SEE ABOVE): “I trekked in Auyuittuq National Park on Baffin Island for two weeks, and for the whole time I was the only human there. The moment I entered this glacier cave, I noticed the icy cold interior of the cave perfectly complemented the warm, soft evening light of the mountain view outside.” Artur Stanisz, Vancouver
HONOURABLE MENTION: “This is a photo of one of the Ta’an Kwäch’än Dancers ... at the Canada Day Adaka Cultural Festival celebrations in Whitehorse.” The dancer, William Jones, wears an owl mask made by his cousin Christina Copper Peters, and represents the Crow clan. Angelo Nonog, Whitehorse
HONOURABLE MENTION: “Alice Vittrekwa, an elder near Fort McPherson, NWT, prepares dry fish. ‘This is our way of life, the Gwich’in way,’ Alice told me.” Kali Spitzer, Daylu (Lower Post), B.C.
ARTS & CULTURE
WINNER: “I was at 8-mile, near Fort McPherson, NWT, last summer, tanning caribou hides with a group of people. We were learning from Eleanor Mitchell-Firth, and up the road is Alice and Ernest Vittrekwa’s home. One night, a bear was bothering Alice and Ernest; he went into their fish house. Ernest had to shoot the bear, it was an amazing shot right through the head. I asked Alice if I could photograph her skinning the bear.” Kali Spitzer, Daylu (Lower Post), B.C.
SCIENCE & NATURE
WINNER: “I was on the land, just outside of Iqaluit, waiting for a dog team to pass by that I was hoping to photograph when I spotted the fox about 100 feet (30 metres) away from me. He knew I was there and he was watching me as he walked by. When he started climbing on a rock, I knew he would look at me again, and I was ready.” Fred Lemire, Iqaluit
HONOURABLE MENTION: “My family and I were driving down the Dempster Highway just north of Tombstone Territorial Park. We came across a small group of caribou and took some time letting our kids see them. Around the next bend, there were a thousand or more.” Jay Blakeston, Inuvik
HONOURABLE MENTION: “Hiking on a glacier is like walking on a globe. You can see the horizon, but it’s not getting any closer. It’s exactly how I felt when I hiked across the Turner Glacier on Baffin Island.” Artur Stanisz, Vancouver
PEOPLE & CULTURE
WINNER: “On this trip to Hall Beach, Nunavut, I was held up for an extra few days because of a severe blizzard. I shot this image just before the blizzard started and just before sundown. It was very cold. It felt below -40C plus the wind. I was out there for about an hour. Walking back to the hotel, this house caught my attention. The porch light gave a feeling of hope in the bitter cold.” Mark Kelly, Whitehorse
HONOURABLE MENTION: “It was after the first significant snowfall of the year in Pond Inlet, and the neighbourhood kids (including my three-year old son, in the green hat) found this qamutiq near someone’s house. Sliding down the packed street, they yelped with glee. Passersby couldn’t keep from smiling.” Lalenia Neufeld, Jasper, AB
HONOURABLE MENTION : “Isaac Maliki is an elder from my community who took part in a fishing derby near Igloolik in the spring of 2014. Although he didn’t catch much, he was all smiles, enjoying his moment, just as he was in his earlier days.” Richard Amarualik, Igloolik
ADVENTURE & TRAVEL
WINNER: “I work at Air Tindi and keep my canoe at the Float Base in Yellownife’s Old Town, which lets me paddle three or four times a week. I took this photo at the houseboats on Yellowknife Bay on an early Sunday morning paddle this summer. It was a smoky season with all the NWT wildfires, but that morning the smoke was gone and there was no wind so I seized the opportunity.” Alasdair Martin, Yellowknife
HONOURABLE MENTION: “I was on a zodiac cruise off the east coast of Baffin Island as part of a Students on Ice Arctic expedition. The program takes students on educational expeditions to the polar regions. Amazing, once in a lifetime experience.” Kristine O’Rielly, St. Brendan’s, NL
HONOURABLE MENTION: “Don’t be deceived by the peaceful landscape: despite the blue sky, wind is always fierce in Auyuittuq National Park, and what looks like cozy flat grass is actually wet moss in which we sunk at every step, slowing down our progression.” Carole Musialek, Yellowknife