John M. Karian

I spent my childhood around, on, and in the Allegheny River.  Living three hundred feet from its banks in Franklin, Pennsylvania, I grew to enjoy its diverse seasonal character.  Even in flood conditions during Spring ice melts, the thrill of skipping stones from my backyard was unparalleled, a flooded basement notwithstanding.

These river shores have witnessed the cries of newborn Native Americans snuggled on their mother’s backs during regional sojourns . . .the agonal laments of wounded combatants in the French and Indian Wars . . . a young Major George Washington listening to Christmas carols sung 260 years ago from a military encampment along the Allegheny at French Creek. . . the “hooray” of oil-seeking “wildcat” drillers . . . the clanking of barrels and logs as they were floated south to Pittsburgh during the Industrial Revolution. . . and now the serene, foggy mornings which witness the pterydactl-like sweep of the Great Blue Heron, and the majestic soaring of the Bald Eagle.

This website attempts to share the excitement I have imaging western Pennsylvania’s landscape.  I will consider it a success if you will take the time to experience the natural tapestry which can unfold during a sunrise or a sunset.  It is at these times that LIGHT can both define and mystically transform the Allegheny River, its streams and wetlands.

“The Heavens declare the Glory of God, and the firmament showeth His handywork”  Psalm 19:1


Process and Technique

Images are captured both digitally and with a variety of conventional film sizes, including 6X9, 645, and 35 mm formats on Zeiss© and/or Leica© lenses, or with a Questar Duplex Telescope. Fine art prints are made by scanning the film up to 4000 dpi, and then making adjustments to the file with Adobe Photoshop CS. Traditional adjustment techniques (color balance, ‘dusting’, and size cropping) are utilized when appropriate. No image alteration, layering, or manipulation is performed. My goal is to convey the excitement and thrill of the imaging experience at the time of shutter release.