Photo Tribute to Alberta’s Western Heritage

  By Evelyn Drake

Local Photo Journalist Leah Hennel will be showcasing a collection of her work as a Tribute to Alberta’s Western Heritage at Chinook Mall from June-November 2013. You can check out this series on the South East part of the centre in the hall towards the administrative offices. Below are the images from the display with captions.

“A photo taken in 2001 of Mouse, Tracy Jenkins son Ryley’s horse grabs a yawn while they take a break after branding the first brand of 700 calfs on the Lazy U Ranch in Southern Alberta. it has been in the Jenkin family for over a century” 

“Bob Lomond, left works on a ranch during branding” 

“Clay Chattaway on the Bar S Ranch established 1886 near Nanton, Alberta”

“Fifth generation rancher Lenore McLean and her horse Toby along with her dog Spur watch the sunset over the foothills of Southern Alberta.”

“Ranching country near the Porcupine Hills”

“Tom Bews with his horse Big Enough watch as a thunderstorm rolls in on his ranch near Longview, Alberta in 2012.”

“Morgan Chattaway rides the range with his dog on the Bar S Ranch near Longview, Alberta.”

“Portrait of Bob Lomond taken after a branding near Stettler, Alberta in 2013.”

  “Rancher Lenore McLean’s spurs.”

“Morgan Chattaway on the Bar S Ranch near Longview, Alberta.”

“Branding time at Bill Cross’ ranch near Stavely, Alberta.”

“Bill Cross, grandson of Alberta legend A.E. Cross, works on his ranch near Stavely, Albert”


“Although I was born and raised in the city, my heart has always been in the country. My dad’s family is second-generation Canadian from Estonia, while my mom’s Irish roots run deep in the Emerald Isle’s soil.

Farming and ranching have been a way of life for both branches of my family tree and, being a bit of a tomboy, I have fond memories of visiting my numerous cousins on their farms around Stettler, Alta., and playing in the fields, riding horses, going to the annual brandings, watching the harvest come in at the end of the crop year.

It was through those visits that my love for the rural lifestyle grew, a love that I’m passing on to my own son. He comes with me to all of our family events. And now, as a photographer for the Calgary Herald, I’m able to both share those memories and make more of my own with my ongoing photographic documentation of the rural way of life.

I first picked up a camera in my late teens and gained an invaluable education first by working with the photographers at the Calgary Sun, especially my friend and mentor Mike Drew, in a high school work-experience program, then by attending the SAIT photojournalism program.The Calgary Herald has been my home base for more than a decade. It’s my day job and I like it, but working on personal projects is what keeps me growing as a photographer. My camera has taken me all over Alberta, to most parts of Canada, to Europe and Africa.

I live in Calgary with my husband Scott Cruickshank and our son Hunter.”

Watch for Leah’s regular contributions in the Calgary Herald or connect with Leah on her BLOG or Twitter @leahhennelphoto


Evelyn Drake has been in the camera business since 2004. She has been involved in every aspect of The Camera Store's operations with a focus on marketing and event-based initiatives. She also hosts our YouTube channel The Camera Store TV.