I’ve been part of a photography class with Ricky Tims (in 2015) and a critique challenge this past (and coming) year. For our final assignment this year, we are to pick our favorite image of 2016. Here are my top 12 + 1 for a Baker’s Dozen. For lack of a better way, I’m posting them in chronological order. You can click/right click on all photos for a larger view.
Clearly, I am biased about some of these, so tell me–which do you think is The Best of the bunch? Doesn’t matter why–just the one you like the best! I need to submit one on January 1, so pipe up!
Photo 1: For the past eleven years, the calendar year begins in the middle of wrestling season, so for both quality of photography and affection/nostalgia, I’ll start with photos of Eli’s last Maine wrestling season.
Here’s another very typical shot:
Photo 2: Eli, in red, goes in for the pin (and win). I have very, very few photos with Eli’s face, but this one shows the intensity of the sport.
This next image is probably the most technically complex I did all year. I had three layers at one point, but the boys’ position in the frame didn’t make a logical sequence, so two worked better. I printed this fairly large and framed it as an 18th birthday present for Eli, and it is in his room with his ***many*** ribbons, plaques and trophies from his sports achievements.
Photo 3: Transparent overlay with Eli in a take-down. I was sitting on the edge of the mat and was maybe 6 feet away from them. Luckily, they didn’t crash into me!
Photo 4: In March the entire family went to hear the Taiko Drummers that came to perform at Strom Auditorium thanks to the Bay Chamber Concert group. I make a tripod of my arms and the rail in front of my seat and was delighted so many of my images turned out well despite the dark.
Photo 5: I love that the drum and legs are crisp, the face is clear, and the arms and drumsticks are total blur, telling the story of the physicality of the performance.
Photo 6: I don’t know why I like this picture of water boiling in my electric kettle so much, but I just do!
Photo 7: a vintage effect for a summertime photo of a barn near me that has now fallen down (even before the snow).
Photo 8: A “panned” image of a sunflower from the Camden Inn garden by the footbridge over the river, just a stone’s throw off of Main Street.
Photo 9: I had missed seeing Paul Noel Stookey when he was here before, so I made sure I didn’t this time, even if I had to go alone. I loved it! I was also pleased that my “tripod on the railing” worked again to get a good shot. The theme was “past prime” which I interpreted that someone might *think* he is past his prime, but really isn’t!
Photo 10: October is always glorious in Maine, and this year was one of the best. I’m not usually in to “artsy” images or affected techniques, but I rather like the painterly effects you can get with some panning. Panning is when you move the camera on purpose while the shutter is open to create a deliberate blur.
Photo 11: I must have taken 200 photos on a not-too-long walk in my neighborhood. One of my favorite spots is across the main road on Blueberry Lane. This is a close-up of the sumac leaves in full glory. I always like the simplicity of photos like this that celebrate the beauty of the ordinary.
Photo 12: Another “lots of edits” photo, but one that makes me laugh. This kinda describes my entire year. Sometimes I think I ought to make this into a poster and sell it!
And the “Baker’s Dozen” image, from just this past week or thereabouts:
Baker’s Dozen: I took several versions of this, made one black and white, but I like the soft winter colors and the gentle curves of our driveway.