From the reeds of the wetlands to Chisel Peak, photographer Bram Rossman has captured the Columbia Valley from top to bottom.
The local photographer, photojournalist and former award-winning Valley Echo reporter has spent so much time snapping his home turf, in fact, that when it came time to narrow down the images for his first photo collection he was faced with a challenge.
“I’ve got many thousands of photos in my hard drive at home, and there’s about 50 or 60 in there,” says Rossman. “It was hard to pare it down that much.”
Small Mouth Big River, his first coffee-table style collection, came off the presses just before Christmas, after several years in the works.
“I’ve always wanted to show off the area and have something that I could say was my own,” explains Rossman. “I love the area, it’s my home, and this is what it turned out to be.”
Funded in part by the Columbia Basin Trust, the self-published work follows the Columbia River through four seasons, with facts about local wildlife, culture and the water itself dropped in along the way.
“A lot of people don’t really realize this massive river starts right here in our backyard, and it’s home to all kinds of wildlife and scenery and habitat,” Rossman says. “I just wanted to show it off.”
Many of the book’s subjects — Radium’s big horn sheep, the white caps of the Rockies and Purcells, fiery fall foliage — will be familiar to those who’ve spent time in the valley.
But Rossman says he’s not aware of another book that puts all of the valley’s iconic images in one place.
“I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it that really captures the whole Columbia Valley, or at least the wetlands and scenes like that,” he says. “Mostly I’m hoping people enjoy it and pick it up.”
Small Mouth Big River is currently available exclusively through Rossman’s website, extremexposures.ca, in both soft cover and hard back versions. He hopes to make it available in local book stores and visitor information centres later this year.