vera saltzman


Grain Elevators

Yes, I guess images of grain elevators are cliche but when the elevators are obsolete, no longer marking the sky, connecting one town to the next, then what will the critics call these images that pay tribute to the prairie cathedrals or as I like to think of them the lighthouses of the prairies. Will they then be precious? I can’t seem to help myself when it comes to photographing them, so I will keep doing it. There is definitely more to the prairies than grain elevators and wheat fields but I think there will always be a soft spot in the hearts of many for these icons of prairie architecture, at least there will be in mine.

Michaud No. 3

I shot this innocent image at Point Michaud Beach on Cape Breton Island this summer. Off the beaten track, and often covered with fog thick as pea soup, it’s a mystical place worth searching out. I remember going here with my father and mother when I was a little girl. While Dad dove fearlessly into the cold Atlantic waves, Mom fretted about the undertow carrying him away. But it wasn’t the ocean that took him. 

3 Trees and a Track
Saskatchewan 2013

Over the last 10 years what have you done? Where have you travelled? Who have you met? Isn’t it inconceivable to think that during those same 10 years some lunatic held three young women prisoner in his house in Cleveland, Ohio. Today my wish is for each woman to find strength to continue on life’s journey, growing stronger with every passing day.

Beautiful Borzoi

I exchanged messages recently with a fellow Tumblr photographer who takes beautiful photos of her German Short Hair Pointer, (one of my favs, and promised her I’d post a dog image soon since we also have a GSP.

Unfortunately, I don’t have any recent ones I like of Lady Ruby Remington. I’m one of those parents who took tons of pics when she was young then put the camera down, but I thought I’d share an image of this amazing, majestic Borzoi that I shot a while back.

Don’t forget to check out the Jacquijr’s work.


Since moving to the prairies I’ve been making images that remind me of home. Each one has a personal story behind it, perhaps just a memory from my childhood. I hope some of these images resonate for people who have grown up here, likely for a different reason, but nonetheless a connection.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Small Town Saskatchewan

Working on these images of small town Saskatchewan, I’m often reminded of W.O. Mitchell, a Canadian author who wrote about life on the prairies. Recently, I found some amazing quotes by him.

Mitchell said,“The arts are not a luxury. They’re how we know we’re not alone.”

I suddenly felt like a bad person recently when I read someone’s comment on a face book page for alternative photography. Referencing a lumen print, a guy wrote in that he figured those who weren’t “fixing” their prints were “cheating.” Is there really such a thing as cheating? Is it about creating work or following a process that boxes you in to a certain way of doing things. Are we still concerned about following the “rules?” If we are honest about what we do, can’t we do what we want?

Tree Stump
Ottawa, ON

For anyone shooting and scanning film, you know the frustration dust causes. I heard a great tip this week. To dust the glass on your scanner use a swiffer - one of those clothes used to wipe down floors. Just make sure you have a plain one without any polisher/cleaners in it. Genius!


P.S. This is a bleached negative. :-)


My mother stitched scraps of material together by hand to make “patchwork quilts.” Random pieces of fabric salvaged from old clothing took on a second life. Nothing went to waste.

I guess some of her thriftiness rubbed off on me. I’ve been working on a pinhole project, trimming 4x5 sheets of paper to fit my camera. Rather than discarding the end pieces, I developed them. Voila!