Every year, I compile my ten favorite images of the year. These aren’t necessarily my best images, but my favorite because of various reasons. It may be the quality, but more likely it is the memory of a fun trip or just an impressive location.
We also do a community top 10 and share the work of others. If you create your own list or want to in the future, join our mailing list (we don’t spam) and we will invite you to participate next year. Be sure to check out the community list of links too!
Before I get to my favorite 10 images, I have one honorable mention. I usually force myself to stick strictly to ten images no matter how painful it is, but I did a lot of underwater photography with my GoPro this year. They are not great by any means, but because I had fun doing it, I wanted to share my favorite underwater image of the year. This sea turtle is one we swam with for a little while out at the Mokes in Oahu.
And now, lets get to my 10 favorite images:
10. Valley View at Yosemite
A two-day solo trip to Yosemite was my lone photography trip of the year. Between work and family travel, photography really took a backseat this year, but I was determined to get to Yosemite for the first time this year. Valley View was one of my favorite views in the entire park. I enjoyed spending a sunset here enjoying the view and watching the shadow creep up the rocks. I would have loved a decent sunset, but it was still a great evening.
9. Pali Lookout in Oahu
While we had an awesome week in Hawaii, it was all about the snorkeling, hiking and adventuring. The only sunset we caught was a brief stop at Pali Lookout. The view point was amazing and the clouds were impressive.
8. Nevada Fall in Yosemite
Three images in and I already have two from Yosemite. Once again, it was my only photography trip of the year. This one was taken in unfortunate lighting conditions, but with the brutal hike it took to get here, sunrise or sunset was not an option. The view of the waterfall with Half Dome in the background is impressive regardless of the conditions and was probably the most impressive location I saw all year from just a physical being there perspective.
7. Munra Falls in Oregon
Munra Falls is a small waterfall you pass along the Wahclella Falls Trail in the Columbia River Gorge. The falls isn’t that impressive, but it is cool how close you walk by the falls and it is difficult to get a decent shot of it. I used a super wide angle lens and crawled out as far as I could to the river to make this image.
6. Virginia v. Baylor at the Main Event in Las Vegas
I am lucky enough to shoot a few college basketball and hockey games every year. The Main Event in Vegas is my favorite tournament to shoot because there are always four great teams and I get to shoot four games in two days. This was my favorite image from the tournament this year.
5. Half Dome from Sentinel Bridge in Yosemite
My last shooting location in Yosemite before heading home was the Sentinel Bridge. I was shocked that there was only one other photographer with me for the sunset this night at this location. The view of Half Dome from here is awesome. Once again, I would have loved a decent sunset, but watching the shadow creep up the mountain while it turned golden was still awesome.
4. Siuslaw River Bridge in Florence, Oregon
One of the few family trips that actually provided some good photography time was our trip to the Oregon Coast for spring break. Our first night in Florence, I snuck away to shoot sunset under the bridge. I don’t do a lot of black and white, but I liked it for this shot.
3. Yaquina Bay Bridge in Newport
My second shot from the Oregon Coast is also a bridge shot. This one is the more famous Yaquina Bay Bridge, which can be difficult to shoot only due to its size. I shot it on a bitter cold night from the crabbing Pier. While the pier provided a great view of the bridge, I think it is too close to get a really good shot without some distortion. If I had it to do over again, I would have picked a location a little further away.
2. Vernal Falls in Yosemite
My fourth and final image from Yosemite. This is also the second image from the amazing Mist Trail, the first being Nevada Fall. Vernal Falls is much easier to reach so I made it there shortly after sunset just in time to catch the sun peaking through the trees. I have about five images from this location that I loved and it was tough picking my favorite. Some were better shots of the falls and some had a nice full rainbow at the base of the falls (taken later in the day on my hike down), but I chose this one because it was the view that impressed me the most in person. The sun cutting through the mist of the falls was magical.
- Wahclella Falls in Oregon
My favorite image of the year is of Wahclella Falls. I love hiking in the Columbia River Gorge and this hike was a really good one. The payoff after a relatively short hike is this great falls that is open to a dozen or more great compositions. I had two images at the top of my favorites and ended up choosing this one.