Reflections on the CN Tower’s Antenna mast first rope access


by Ivan Kristoff

To me, remote photo shooting of the progression of rope access work related assignments is the artistic expression of “Knowing yourself and what drives” notion.

In Shintoism, the purification of one’s soul  is to know thyself, to seek honor by first looking inside the soul and confront the intimate fears that we hide from ourselves, and that plague our psyche in everyday life.

The word Shinto in translation can have the same metaphorical meaning as in English, “way of life”. Most of my photos reflect my way of life in the vertical environment. Through visual arts I search for new horizons of my visual perception of my belonging in the world of extreme endeavors. When you know yourself you know where you belong. This sense of belonging has depicted in these photos.

Taking wireless remote camera control photos of my work performance at extreme heights was inspired by the Shinto philosophy in which, you have to look at yourself as in a reflection of a mirror. In Shinto, the mirror is a powerful symbol for self-reflection.  In literature, in film, in the arts in general, mirrors often signal poignant moments of deep reflection.  In my photography I see the visual aspect of the achievements of my goals and how far I have gone – beyond my wildest dreams to work on the highest buildings in the world and step where no man has stepped before. This is the advantage of pioneering new trends in remote access and space services.

The history’s greatest martial artist Morihei Ueshiba, founder of Aikido, said that “To know yourself is to know the universe’.’A better reading of Ueshiba’s meaning might be along the lines “to master yourself (your thoughts and movement and desire) and having done so, bringing yourself into accord with natural law, you will find yourself always in accord with natural law”.  Taking photographs from high elevation inspired me by his poem:

‘The divine beauty
Of heaven and earth!
All creation,
Members of
One family.”