My biggest difficulty in writing this post is that I want, in part, to write almost the exact same thing as last year. I believe I have advanced considerably in some ways but am just spinning wheels in others. But let’s just dwell on the positives.
In late April I went on a photo trip (nXnw) which turned several online friendships into fuller friendships. That was the best photo development of the year. I also visited two National Parks on the trip, of the sort I had come to assume I would never see. I shot a lot more film, although no film images made this collection. I’m moving firmly into a being a Fuji shooter, while limiting the Nikon system to fewer and fewer marginal uses. I am shooting more and more outside of New York City, while mostly staying in the region. This year fewer than half of the shots I published on the blog were taken in NYC (not counting still lifes and macros taken in my house) and appropriately just under half of the images in this collection are city shots.
I believe the overall quality of my images is improving, but I cannot be sure that this year’s favorites are better than last year’s. And this is a collection of favorites. I make no pretense that I can select my best. In fact, a couple of the images I included are more the favorites of folks who have commented or interacted with me to express their preferences. So here they are. A baker’s dozen. I had thought I could get down to a group of 10 this year (last year I featured 12) but in order to accommodate a variety of image types, locations, and like I said, various favorites, I bumped it up to 13. I very much hope that next year I can avoid the temptation to feature 14 for ’14.
The order below is effectively random. I inserted the images into the photo collage software and made only 2 switches to better fit the thumbnails into the slots.
You can also view the entire set in a gallery format here, where you can also buy a variety of prints.
Mister X In Radiant CIty
I love this two times. Once because it is an iPhone grab shot taken with no thought when I left work and noticed the fog, the wet reflections, and the silhouette. And again because it reminds me of the Mister X comics from the 1980s.
While visiting Walt Disney World in the Spring with my family, I shot a number of toys and merchandise in the stores. This capture of a bin of plush Sully dolls from Monsters, Inc. won a place in my heart.
Fisher Towers Infrared
When I returned from the nXnw trip, this was the first image I published on the blog. I chose it in part because it was an infrared, the black and white conversion was already done in the camera, and I was tired. It holds up.
Central Park Bow Bridge In Snow
I had a goal last winter to capture some basic images from Central Park after a fresh snow. I went out on a Sunday morning after an overnight snowfall which turned out to be just about a dusting, but I still managed to get most of the shots I wanted. This is I think the only print I sold all year.
I’m not sure is service is down or ridership is up but the subway seems to be getting more crowded recently and I’m finding it more difficult to get these isolated shots. This one was actually taken in 2011 but not shared publicly until 2013.
Dead Horse Point Photographer
That’s my friend Bob Lussier (link goes to his Best of 2013 post – go check it out). It’s a tough competition, but I think Dead Horse Point was the most beautiful location on our nXnw trip.
Making A Connection
This image still haunts me.
Delicate Arch Infrared
My regular image of Delicate Arch might be better, but it is not anything you haven’t seen a million times. Infrared Delicate Arch is not unknown, but it is much less common. A truly breathtaking sight in real life, and worth the hike.
Mohonk Boat Deck In Fog
This was taken in 2012, without much effort of thought. I was walking by the dock in light rain, and just thought to crouch down and reach my Fuji x100 across the chain barrier for thi sshot. I then forgot about it for months. It is now among my personal favorites not just for this year but all time. Probably top 5.
The Grey Man Can Be A Bit Of A Square
One of my favorite locations in the city. The square crop helps emphasize the subject and sets up the title.
Reflective Still Life
I bought a black acrylic sheet to help with still life, product and macro shots. The flowers are from the backyard.
Newtown Creek and Manhattan Skyline
I had driven over the bridge from where I took this a few times and noticed the view of Manhattan. Unfortunately a chain link fence made composition pretty difficult. I think I shoved the small lens of the x100s through the fence and angled the camera as best as I could to get this shot.
Mesa Arch Tonal Recession
I decided to feature one shot each from the 4 most memorable viewpoints we visited during nXnw: Route 128 and the Colorado River Valley (where the Fisher Towers infrared was taken), Delicate Arch, Dead Horse Point, and Mesa Arch. I took this through Mesa Arch, after we all got the common yet iconic sunrise shot. I played a lot with this one during post-processing to get the color tones and contrast just as I wanted them.