I was born in the year when Man had set foot on the Moon for the first time in its long history.
In my boyhood, stars in the night sky had always attracted me, and the
various stories of Greek
myth had inspired my imagination.
My small telescope was the wonderful tool to take me to the world of celestial beauty then, and
I can never forget the exitment I felt when I saw the Ring of Saturn for
the first time in my life.
The Images of other planets and asteroids taken and delivered back through
the endless void by
the interplanetary probes, Voyagers and Pioneers, showed me that there were the true wonders
awaiting us beyond the boundary of our daily life, and I respected the
spirit of adventure which
made them explore the unknown in spite of the dangers awaiting ahead.
As I grew up, I learned that there was yet another frontier, on this very planet and within my
reach: it existed under the brilliant glow of the Polar Star.
-The adventure of the late Naomi Uemura, who ventured into the hazardous land of arctic
Alaska and Canada with dogsled,
-A Story of Japanese Prospector, Frank Yasuda, who saved the many lives of starving Eskimos
in Barrow by leading them to the village of Beaver,
-The thrilling tales and episodes of explorations conducted by Roald Amundsen and Fridjof
Nansen in search of the legendary Northwest Passage,
Those books let my imagination wander about the Arctic World, and the
lives of wild animals,
along with those of the Eskimos and Native Indians under the mysterious
glow of the Northern
Fate had introduced me with an incredible book of photography, White Wolf, written by Jim
Brandenburg, a photographer of excellent craftman spirit dedicated to the natural
I was stunned with the true workmanship shown in every page, every image
taken in the face of
the overwhelmingly severe yet beautiful nature.
* * * * *
One question lingers on me: "WHY?"
Of all the countless other beautiful land exists on this planet, why ALASKA?
Why does this particular area of arctic region attracts me so much-
I believe this is the reason I set sail for the endless voyage to this
"last frontier", in search of
the answer to my mental proposition.
In my childhood, "The Last Frontier" only meant a Barren Ground
with Snow, Ice and Rock;
however, I found a truely beautiful land of nature filled with life, instead
of a cold and lifeless
void, up in the North. This frontier sometimes forces me to struggle under
its savage claws and
fangs, yet I am always rewarded with precious experience, bestowed upon
me by whatever spirit
who resides in this heavenly world.
I named this website gallery with the term Northward, in an attempt to express my deepest love
and interest in the North. Here I will try to introduce various images of wild animals and scenery
in Alaska, and Japan as well, with which I have encountered during my
voyage to the future - yet
February 4th, 2007 Kenji Chono