Wow, I have not posted a blog post since March, 2014! I didn't even do a post of my top photos in 2014 and 2014 was an awesome year! 2015 was a really amazing year as well! I got to travel to the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior and the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, I got engaged, I became the president of our family business... It was a busy year!
2015 was also kind of a bad year for photography for me. Not really bad, just I've been so busy with everything else, especially these last few months, I haven't had the time to focus on photography. I don't want that to happen in 2016 so I'm making myself a list of goals. First, I'm going to enter in the Chatham Public Library Art Show, like I did in 2013. Its just a small town art show, but its a really nice one. All of the work featured is beautiful and there is a lot of talent there. Second, I am going to make myself a list of 52 weekly "projects". Each week, I will have a new project that is focused around some sort of landscape or nature technique, or something specific to shoot. Lastly, my goal is to finally be accepted into the Peoria Fine Art Fair. I have been wait listed TWICE, but never accepted.
In March of 2016, I will also be traveling to Arizona with LightChase Photography for a "Desert Bloom" workshop. The most I have ever been in Arizona was at Four Corners in 1994 (I was 8), so this will be a new experience for me!
Now that I have my goals laid out for the year, I want to reflect on my top 10 favorite photos of 2015, which is going to be hard!
1. "Into the Aurora"
This one was taken on Madeline Island, one of the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior, in June. This is my favorite because of the experience I had while shooting it. I had gone to bed about 9pm and set my alarm for midnight because I wanted to get up and photograph the stars while I was on Lake Superior in a zero light pollution area. My alarm clock went off and I hit snooze (twice). Finally, I thought, I'm here, I need to get up and at least see if they're worth shooting. So I lumbered out of bed, opened the door, and instantly saw the most beautiful cloud-like formations, dancing in the sky. I grabbed my gear and ran out to the orchard on the property and shot for an hour straight, with the storm never slowing down. It felt very surreal, being alone with the aurora dancing above your head. It was one of the most zen moments I had ever felt. About 1:15am, I thought, I've taken over a hundred shots, and I had to be up in a few hours to shoot sunrise, so I needed to go to bed. I know the storm continued on into the night. It was quite an amazing sight, and for many, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
2. "Lupine Field"
I love this one because of the colors and the movement. This was taken on back, dirt road on Madeline Island. This home was abandoned, but you can tell its been there for a very long time. It was probably some old fisherman's home. The field around it had overgrown and had these beautiful Lupine flowers in it. It was windy, so you can see the movement of the flowers and the grass.
3. "Bay Morning"
I love this one because its different from what I usually do. Its more of a minimalist photograph where usually I shoot a scene with a lot of detail. I love the vast emptiness of the water with the colors of the rocks. I would like to do more like this in 2016!
4. "Perseids Over Lake Windermere"
I love this because its my home, my backyard. Taken in August, during the Perseids Meteor Shower, I got up at 3:30am on the morning of the 12th and headed to the other side of my subdivision to shoot the Perseids over the lake. I live in a rural area, but we still get a lot of light pollution from the neighboring towns. That is the glow you see on the horizon. I saw a handful of meteors, and one really good one, which of course I was resetting my camera at that time and didn't get that one. I did get this one just over the trees and you can even start to see a reflection of it in the lake. The fog started to roll in shortly after on the lake and it was a really beautiful morning.
5. "Storm King Selfie"
In July, I went to the San Juan Mountains in Colorado with LightChase Photography. It was quite the week with weather. The first day, it poured on us at one point in the mountains. We were in one of those soft-top Jeeps with open sides, so that wasn't very enjoyable! It was all worth it though. We had some really breathtaking views and at each location, I would take a "selfie" of myself like this one.
6. "Big Bay Sunrise"
This one really should be up higher than #6, but its hard to choose! I love this one. I love the sky, the water, and the little bit of land. I had set this on about a 30 second exposure so you had the movement of the clouds and the milkiness of the water movement.
7. "Sunset Over the Sea"
So, this one was actually taken in 2014, but on like December 29th, so I'm counting it for this year. This was taken in Jamaica when my fiance and I spent the week there over Christmas. I didn't do a lot of shooting, but the little bit I did, there were some amazing landscapes. I love the hard surface of the wood coming out of the soft surface of the sand. I feel like it gives it a lot of contrast in textures.
8. "Aurora Vortex"
Of course I have to do another Aurora from Madeline Island because it was such an awesome experience. I love this one since it has the house in the photo, it gives it this surreal look, almost like in the Wizard of Oz with Dorothy's house flying in the tornado look. I love the light on in the window, but the people inside had no idea what was going on. Seeing this photo again makes me want to go back to this moment so bad!
9. "Hopedale Road"
I love this one because it was another taken at home. This is about 5 miles from my house and the Mackinaw River is behind me. It was a beautiful, foggy morning that I had gone out shooting with my mom. It was early fall, so the grass, the beans and the corn are starting to turn brown, but not too brown yet.
10. "Door County Sunset"
I had to include a Door County one because its my favorite place in the world. This was taken on the first Friday in May, the night before I got engaged. My fiance and I, went out and drove around the county for fun and as I saw the sun setting, we pulled into a church parking lot so I could get this shot. Door County in May is wonderful because its before their tourist season and there aren't a lot of people there yet!
2015 was a great year. I had some big sales at Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery (and hopefully some bigger ones in 2016)! I got to travel to some really cool places, meet interesting people and learn a ton! I can't wait to see where 2016 takes me! Thank you for all of your support!