Aurora's Winter Waltz - Northern Lights Photography

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9780977907007: Aurora's Winter Waltz - Northern Lights Photography

Alaskan photographer Michael Klensch presents 64 pages of his best and most breathtaking images of the aurora borealis in Aurora's Winter Waltz. This beautifully done, hardbound 8 x 9 inch book makes a perfect gift for anyone who delights in the night sky.

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About the Author:

As a Skagway resident and freelance landscape photographer, I look to the natural beauty that surrounds me everyday for limitless photographic inspiration and adventure. Educated and trained in environmental sciences, I have spent most of my career working for a number of National Parks across the country. Exposure to the beauty of the natural world has created a personal passion for the preservation and stewardship of nature, which I express through photography. I believe that photography not only provides aesthetic pleasure for the eyes, but also if done responsibly and conscientiously, is an artistic medium that delivers a very genuine understanding of who we are, and how we fit in.

I have always been, and continue to be awe-struck by the incredible beauty and variety in natural landscapes. However, unaltered landscapes are now just as threatened with extinction as the many species of flora and fauna that inhabit them. To see the beauty and magic of the natural world with ones own eyes is to truly comprehend how fortunate we are to share this extraordinarily beautiful planet. By capturing some of this magic through my camera lens, I hope to inspire others to see the natural beauty around them and to preserve these special places for future generations.

After moving to Alaska, I was immediately overwhelmed with the grandeur and beauty that surrounded me. Since so few people have the opportunity to see this otherworldly beauty for themselves, it especially brings me great joy to share my boreal images with others. There are no "tricks" to my photography. In fact, it is rather "low-tech" compared to the techniques and equipment generally used by today's professionals. My aurora images are not filtered or altered in any way, and I only use natural light (both visible and infrared) for my daylight landscapes. Every time I peer through my camera's viewfinder, it's like seeing this amazing landscape for the first time. The grandeur of snow-capped mountains, deep blue icy fjords, crystal clear alpine lakes, and star-filled auroral painted night skies continue to blow me away and stirs emotions that are hard to put into words. It is my sincere hope that my photos communicate where words fail.


     - Dee Longenbaugh

"Book Captures Aurora"

Michael Klensch of Skagway has the soul of a poet and the skill of a top photographer. He describes his truly beautiful photos of the aurora borealis with short essays on classical views of the sky and its starry inhabitants. The book format is oblong, which makes for a nice layout, and the color reproduction is outstanding.

There's a short lecture on Aurora and Sol and the Pleiades of Roman lore, as well as a scientific explanation of the cause of the Northern Lights, which isn't nearly as much fun as Roman myths. That could be my own bias, although I never could see more than the belt of Orion and thought the ancients were really stretching it in some of the constellations.

The Valkyries of the Norse are brought into the story as well, although it's a bit disappointing that none of the Tlingit legends are referred to.
    [note: the reviewer accidentally missed the native legends page. --Mike]

However, the stunning photographs, most taken from Skagway but some from northern British Columbia and the Yukon are included, show the various colors and shapes of the lights. He also shows a surley prize-winning double exposure of the sun and the aurora streaming down to soften his lecture on the solar winds and magnetic fields for the unscientific.

He also captures some great shots of the moon and Venus rising above the mountains in Skagway. Perhaps the most spectacular event he witnessed was a night on the beach when all was red about him, and a whale and her calf breached, as did some seals, in a red mist.

The two most amazing things to this non-astronomer are that he used only ordinary 35mm cameras and no tricks other than the one double exposure and, most of all, that a resident of Southeast Alaska found enough clear nights to photograph the sky.

Buy two copies - one for you and one for your sky pals Down South.

--The Sitka Sentinel

     - Stuart J. Goldman

"Aurora's Winter Waltz"

If you've never seen a vibrant display of the northern lights, this book may inspire you to take the journey poleward. Alaskan photographer, Michael Klensch has collected his finest aurora imagery as captured from his home state and northwestern Canada. Most of the pictures in this self-published book are accompanied by brief captions, but Klensch also provides a bit of background about auroras and one longer narrative about an especially vibrant display (one photo in this section looks more like a Hawaiian volcano erupting that the northern lights). The sparseness of text is just as well - the pages showing varied glowing forms hanging over mountains and lakes really don't need elaboration.

--Sky and Telescope Magazine

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