My Ten Favourite Images of 2015
There's been a thing going around in social media where photographers are asked to share their 10 best images from 2015. It's a difficult challenge as I find it almost impossible to choose my 10 best or 10 favourite images out of the photographs taken this year.
2015 has been an absolutely spectacular year for me and there are irons in the fire for 2016 that make me very excited about what the new year will bring. This year has been a year of travel, travel and more travel and while I do whinge a bit about never being home, I must confess that I do love it, despite needing to be super-organised with flight bookings, packings, organising house sitters and other tasks that precede overseas travel. The bulk of my favourite images are from my trips away running photography tours and experiences with Lynn Gail? and Aaron Dowling?, but there are also images that are taken locally, proving that you can find images that touch your heart even in your own backyard.
Here are the images, with an explanation of each image following (click on the image to view a larger version):
An explanation of the images (starting from top left):
- Testing out the Nikon AW1 underwater camera at the Ammo Jetty, Woodman Point. It's a pretty simple camera to use and I was trying my best to get those half under water, half above water shots, and this gigantic morning swimmer made the perfect subject.
- Taken inside the outer gates of Angkor Wat, at close to sunset. The Apsara Guards who monitor the temple complex were shooing visitors out as the temple complex closes at 5.30pm, so I set up my tripod with an ND filter and took long exposures of the crowds leaving through the outer gate. You can barely see the people -- just their ghostly presences.
- At the Taverna O Platanos in Poros, Greece. This older man sat there smoking, drinking ouzo with water. A truly Greek moment that fascinated me. I ended up staying at the taverna past sunset and feasted on grilled seafood washed down with red wine. Poli kala!
- An Italian nonna in Matera makes her way home in the late afternoon light. The hard light, white buildings and silhouettes made this a natural candidate for black and white.
- Dusk at the beautiul island of Hydra in Greece. I noticed the light and the shape made by the old lamp post, and waited until this gentleman wandered into the frame. Hydra holds a special place in my heart -- it's a quiet island, unique in that it lacks vehicles (donkeys are the primary means of transport) and is so full of character and photographic opportunities. I would love to run something there one day...
- This year has been a good year for meeting amazing people, and it's the year I formed a friendship with ex-digger, Russell Nastasi?. When Russell started Facebook-sharing his images taken while on tour of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq, I knew that the images had to be seen by a wider audience. Thus was born his exhibition shown at the Epson Print Gallery at Team Digital?. This portrait was taken in my Freo studio to create some images of Russ as he is now, to complement images he took in Afghanistan that were on exhibition. Check out Russ's work at Nastasi Photography.
- On the East Arnhem Land tour that Lynn and I ran in September, we met an inspiring man of country -- Marcus Lacey (Mungul) -- in Nyinyikay Community. Marcus is a teacher, a leader and a man of great heart, spirit and knowledge. On our first evening there, he took us for a walk across the mangrove flats and explained the lay of the land and stories of his people. Here he is walking across the flats with his faithful hound, Mr Woney.
- The purification ceremony at Pura Tirta Empul in Bali. I headed there early one morning, keen to experience the ceremony and took several long exposures of the Balinese washing their bad/negative thoughts/aspects away under the flow of springwater. If you are in anyway spiritually or experientially inclined, the purification ceremony is a must if you visit the Island of the Gods.
- It's been awhile since I visited AQWA and I was there recently, while taking visiting relatives on a sightseeing tour of Perth. We entered the walk through aquarium and aqualung divers were in the water doing various cleaning/maintenance jobs. As a small group of school kids ambled down the walkway, I could see their fascination with the divers. This was one of those moments when you just react to an opportunity and try your best to frame each shot for the potential story it could tell.
- Finally, one of the simplest natural light portraits I have shot and one of my favourites. Taken at Bathers Bay in Fremantle, just next to the Kidogo Arthouse. I noticed the late afternoon light angling in from the side and quickly posed a mate of mine, Steve, in that light.
This is just a small sampling of images from 2015. It's very difficult to qualify your best or favourite 10, so I hope you have enjoyed looking at these. Have a wonderful New Year and may you and your camera create many, many stunning images in 2016!