First of all Happy New Year! The end of another year has come. We're all a bit older and wiser now (right!). This time of year one can't help but look back at and take stock in what we have, and what we have lost. We look at the good times, and think about what we have learned from the bad. I would say most people regard each year with bittersweet romanticism - we remember the good times, and try to forget the bad.
This year was no different for me. In February I lost my 100 year old grandfather, then in May my 15 year outdoor cat Mary, disappeared. Then a month later my 13 1/2 year old dog Max was diagnosed with stomach cancer, and had to be put down. I'm still wrestling with the guilt (I know, I know) of that one.
Although those things make me feel a bit melancholy, the year had some great times and landmarks. I helped my partner and girlfriend Kristi open her own Pilates business, which has been quite successful in the first 6 months. The renovation on my house was officially complete (are we ever really finished though?). My dad bought a rental property, which I have been charged with the task of renovating as well ( oh boy ). This year I signed a contract with Allstar Grand Canyon Tours agreeing to display my images on their website and promotional material, in exchange for free tours and transportation to the canyon. I've enjoyed months and months of displaying and selling my work from a small gallery in Vora Financial's offices in downtown Flagstaff. Plus, I had some wildly enjoyable adventures in Arches, Canyonlands, the Grand Canyon, Escalante, Bryce and Zion.
Photographically speaking those wild adventures translated into some of the best images of my life. Looking back at my blog posts from the last year, you can see the fruits of my labor. Ansel Adams was quoted as saying that a photographer is lucky if he takes 12 significant images over the course of a year. This was of course before the digital revolution, and the keeper rate is arguably way more than that for the average photographer. Honestly I haven't yet completed the processing of all my images from last year, so I'm not going to follow suit and post my top favorites. They are already posted right here in my blog.
What I have posted today is my favorite image taken in Zion National Park. It was made in the canyon of the Left Fork of North Creek in the most popular area called the Subway. It gets its name from the under cut and tubular looking sandstone formation formed by the creek and years of flooding and erosion. Only about a quarter mile long, it's one of those favorite icons of the southwest. We went in late November aiming for the last bit of fall trying to capture its colorful leaves. You have to get there early, and hope for a bit of sunlight to capture the sun bouncing off the canyon walls (kinda looks like train headlights in a Subway). Although I did take some standard compositions of the area, I tried to make an original composition of an oft photographed subject. I hope you like it, and as always, feel free to comment. I hope you have a Happy New Year!