Chris Attrell

Photographer Chris Attrell signs a copy of his new photo book about old grain elevators during his visit to the Swift Current Museum, 


Photographer Chris Attrell’s ongoing fascination with old structures and buildings on the prairie landscape has resulted in the publication of his second photo book.

Grain Elevators: Beacons of the Prairies features around 140 images of wooden grain elevators photographed across western Canada during different seasons and at night and day.

The 128 pages hardcover book is published by MacIntyre Purcell Publishing Inc. It contains Attrell’s full-colour images as well as text written by Christine Hanlon about the history of these prairie sentinels.

Attrell spoke about his passion for photography and his two published works during a presentation at the Swift Current Museum, Feb. 9. He also spoke afterwards to local media about his latest book.

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Grain Elevators Front Cover SM

Photographer Chris Attrell's new book features some great shots of the several hundred grain elevators that are still standing, St. Albert's included. MACINTYRE PURCELL/Supplied

You can't deny the sense of nostalgia many people feel for grain elevators. Once peppering the Prairies by the thousands, now many have been laid to waste by the ravages of time and neglect. Entire communities used to be built around them. The growth of our population depended on it. A grain elevator was a sign of prosperous times.

Ah, but the heyday was decades ago. These structures just aren't the focal points of the grain trade they used to be. Still, they evoke a certain wonder and pride for many.

For those reasons plus the appreciation of a fine art photograph well taken, the new book Grain Elevators: Beacons of the Prairies is a fine addition to anyone's coffee table collection. Photographer Chris Attrell explained he has had a lifelong fascination with these once majestic buildings ever since his youth.

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