It’s the time of the year again to look back at the photos I have taken this last year and choose the best ones and present them to you again. Like the last two years, Jim Goldstein is making a photo blog project out of it, collecting entries from all over the globe from photographers.
Last year, I made a Top 10 list and added some honorable mentions. This year I’ll give it a different spin and divide the photos by subject: Flowers, Animals & Insects, Architecture, Panoramas, and Miscellaneous things. Since I don’t want to tax your internet connecting with tons of high resolution images, you can click on any image to see a larger version.
Like most years I spent a lot of time doing flower macro shots. Since I spent part of the year in Atlanta, GA, and part in Frankfurt, Germany, I have tons of photos both from the Atlanta Botanical Garden and the Palmengarten in Frankfurt. Both are very much worth a visit and beautiful places to forget that you are in a big, metropolitan city. My favorite of the year is the single rose shot, which is a pretty wide shot for my usual macro photography but I absolutely love the bokeh in the background and the processing that makes it look like an old, maybe hand-colored, photo. The slight blur, by the way, is due to the Lensbaby with which I took this photo.
Animals & Insects
I always love to go to the zoo and photograph animals, their beauty and behavior always fascinate me. Insects can also be very fascinating because you can see much more details with a photo lens than you could with the naked eye but they are a pain to photograph. This year I was only able to fit in thre trips to the zoo, one to the Zoo in Atlanta, one to the Opelzoo near Frankfurt and one to a small zoo specialising in reptiles called Reptilium. Oh, and the jellyfish is from the Georgia Aquarium, of course.
My favorite is the photo of the fly because I think it’s pretty unusual to have the fly looking directly at you while taking a photo – plus the traces of bright yellow pollen.
I’ve only really started to get my feet with with architectual photography this year and I am still learning a ton. Most of the time I am drawn to unusual details or unusual perspectives but then I will also have a ton of pure tourist shots. Most of my city photos have been HDRs, I think that a subtle HDR is closer to reality than a single exposure shot of the same scene most of the time.
My favorite of the year has to be this powder tower in Prague. Like the ghosting suggests, it started out as an HDR and then I converted it to a black & white with a lot of contrast. I love how ominous it looks this way – you keep thinking about the evil power of it.
Sometimes you really need a panoramic shot to give a true depiction of the scene before your eyes. I think these panoramas really highlight that. The first shows a small percentage of the graves in the Oakland Cementary in Atlanta and its beautiful old trees. The second is the skyling in Frankfurt during a festival, third is one in Prague and the fourth one is again Frankfurt as seen from one of the skyscrapers (it’s the second skyscraper on the upper panorama – the round one with the antenna on top – the direction of the photo is the same area, too). I love all of them because they are so immersive when you look at them in high resolution. Most were done with 6 or more photos.
These photos do not really fit in a category – but I love them nonetheless, especially the photos I took of the fire artists. The light given of by the fire is so super interesting, I think. Those photos are some of which I am most proud of this year, too, since I did not have a tripod or monopod with me, it was the middle of the night and the available light changed suddenly, depending on the tricks they were doing. Two years ago I would have been unable to get any got shots but now I have the knowledge to get photos I like. That’s probably my biggest take-way from photographing this year.
Which one is your favorite? Are you also participating in Jim’s project?