Yukon: Colour of the Land


122 pages
ISBN 0-9694612-7-5
DDC 971.9'103'0222




Photos by Richard Hartmier
Reviewed by Patricia Morley

Patricia Morley is professor emerita of English and Canadian studies at
Concordia University, Japan Foundation Fellow 1991-92, and the author of
Margaret Laurence: The Long Journey Home and As Though Life Mattered:
Leo Kennedy’s Story.


Richard Hartmier has been photographing the Yukon for the last 20 years.
His photographs are frequently featured in major international magazines
and in the travel sections of newspapers such as the New York Times. His
eyes, and his lens, are drawn to the beauty of nature, old houses, and
the faces that belong to this land.

There is no text. Hartmier’s photos make their own statements. In his
half-page introduction he writes: “The colour of the land changes with
the hours, days and weeks of the northern summer. It’s found in the
plants and animals of this majestic and pristine northern wilderness.
It’s found along mighty rivers, in mountain passes and in hillside
meadows lit brilliantly by flowers under a warm summer sun.”

The colours are indeed breathtaking, whether seen from a helicopter, a
canoe, or the ground. There is the deep jade of Emerald Lake; the
fuschia and purple of fireweed, the Yukon’s floral emblem; the
incredible amber of Pilot’s Butte beside the Dempster Highway; the
delicate pinks of migrating salmon at the Whitehorse fish ladder; and
the scarlet ceremonial jacket of a Tlingit dancer. There are striking
sunsets, northern lights, and blue glaciers looming like ancient cliffs.

Hartmier’s compositions are nicely balanced. The eye is drawn both to
vast panoramas and the telling detail. After an hour or two with these
photos, we feel we know this land and these people.


Hartmier, Richard., “Yukon: Colour of the Land,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 16, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/1275.