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About Albert Karvonen

In 1975 Albert Karvonen left his day job to pursue his passion. He cast off his role as teacher and principal and picked up a camera instead. He was in his mid-forties. He had been teaching for twenty-four years. But it was time to switch gears and to document the wildlife that had been capturing his attention since he was a boy.

His first film, Drummer in the Woods, was only 10 minutes long. But it began a filmmaking odyssey that now includes over 110 film, television, and multimedia titles distributed to over 100 countries. Along with numerous awards, his films have achieved commercial success, a feat that few independent filmmakers manage. And Karvonen Films Ltd. offers one of the largest natural history motion picture libraries in Canada.

Awards and Honours

After more than thirty years of turning his educator’s eye to the documentation and preservation of wildlife, it is not surprising that Albert has been the recipient of many awards.

  • In 1991, he was awarded the prestigious David Billington Award, a benchmark in a career devoted to the production of outstanding wildlife films.
  • In 1997, the City of Edmonton recognized Albert’s work with the Salute to Excellence Award for Lifetime Contribution to the Arts.
  • The Alberta Centennial Medal was awarded in 2005, for his contributions to education in Alberta.
  • In 2007, an Honorary Doctor of Science was conferred on Albert by Athabasca University.


The images and sounds located here were donated by Albert and Pirkko Karvonen as part of their legacy to Albertans and to the world.

For a more comprehensive list of available footage, sounds and stills for purchase, please visit Karvonen Films Ltd.

Library Services - Last Updated May 30, 2011, 11:52:46 MST/MDT