It has become a tradition for many photographers to publish their favorite photos of the year. I embrace this tradition because it helps me review my photography for the year and also is a good way to introduce new images to my followers. I have included some background information for each image below as well as why it was chosen. These images are published in chronological order so the order is not an indication of my preference for any particular image. I hope you enjoy viewing them as much as I enjoyed shooting them!
We visited Florida in February. Our trip was planned primarily to see my relatives, but I was able to find some time to take a few photos. This first image is looking out to the ocean from a private dock on Captiva Island. Docks are a fascinating subject because they are literally a bridge between two different worlds, dry land and open water. It was a bit cloudy on this day which made the dawn light very blue. I like the moodiness of this image.
I love to make abstract images using various techniques. Shooting close up and photographing reflections are 2 great ways to make abstract images and this shot combines both techniques. I like the graphical composition of this image.
I love shooting the new green leaves in the springtime. The Japanese call this time of year “The Time of New Greenery”. This is a shot of a small waterfall at the Portland Japanese Garden. I used a slow shutter speed to make the falling water look silky. I like the contrast of the motion blurred water against the sharp, green leaves.
I took a road trip down to California in April. My first stop was San Francisco so I decided to shoot the city skyline at twilight. This shot was taken from Yerba Buena Island which is conveniently located between Oakland and San Francisco and can be accessed from the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge. I like the illuminated bridge and buildings against this beautiful twilight sky.
After Spending time in San Francisco I traveled up the coast of northern California. One night I stopped in Fort Bragg and visited Glass Beach. The city of Fort Bragg had a trash dumping sight next to the ocean and over the years many glass bottles and other objects were washed into the ocean. After many years these fragments of glass were eroded into smooth glass pebbles. The white and brown pebbles in this image are actually small pieces of glass that were eroded by the surf. I like the abstract design of real pebbles and glass pebbles in this image.
In May we visited Italy starting in Rome. One morning I got up early to shoot Trevi Fountain during the blue hour. I love shooting at this time of day because there are so few people wondering around and everything is very quiet and beautiful. I like this very impressive monument with the twilight sky in the background.
On our trip to Italy we spent some time in Naples. This is the Toledo Metro Station of the Naples subway. I am a big fan of modern architecture and when I saw a photo of this station I decided I had to go shoot it early in the morning. It was designed by a Spanish architectural firm along the themes of water and light. I like the surreal feeling of this ultra modern architecture.
When we were in Naples we took a tour of the opera house. Naples was the birthplace of opera and Teatro di San Carlo is the oldest continuously active public opera house in the world. It was originally commissioned by King Charles and was completed in 1737. As you can see the royal box is very impressive and such a beautiful building!
After Naples we flew to Palermo in Sicily. Palermo was the capital of the Norman kingdom of Sicily. This is a mosaic mural of Christ Pantocrator in the Palantine Chapel which was the royal chapel of the Norman kings of Sicily It was built in the 12th century. The Normans defeated the Arabs who ruled Sicily for over 200 years until 1061. Since Sicily was a crossroads of mariners in the medieval Mediterranean Sea, its culture is a mixture of Roman, Byzantine and Arab which is known as the Arab Norman style. The mosaic murals are truly amazing and were the highlight of our trip to Palermo.
When we were in Palermo we joined a tour of the opera house, Teatro Massimo. Since Palermo is the largest city in Sicily and was its capital in the past, it has the most impressive opera house on the island. This is a view looking directly up at the ceiling. They just do not make buildings like this anymore!
While I was in Sicily, I spent some time in Syracuse. In the 5th century BC Syracuse was the largest Greek city in the ancient world with a population larger than Athens. It was the home and birthplace of the famous mathematician Archimedes which is why this square is named Piazza Archimede. I like the movement of the water and the horse stature against this beautiful twilight sky.
While I was in Sicily, I made a brief trip to Malta via the ferry. I had lunch in the small fishing village of Marsaxlokk and I fell in love with the design of the traditional fishing boats. So I went back early the next morning to shoot the reflections in the early morning light. All of these boats have eyes painted on their bows to protect against storms and calamities at sea. I like the colorful, abstract composition of this image.
After Malta, I spent a night in Ragusa. Ragusa along with Syracuse and Noto are known as the Baroque Triangle because of the abundance of baroque style buildings. In the late 17th century there was a large earthquake in southern Sicily. After the earthquake, most of the building had to be rebuilt and because baroque architecture was in vogue at this time all of the buildings were built in what is now known as Sicilian baroque style. Ragusa offers some beautiful vistas because it is built on several hills. I found this viewpoint and then went back the next morning to shoot the sun rising behind the city. It was such a beautiful sight to see.
Wishing you the Best in 2017. I hope our paths may cross!