Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014 Favorites

My favorite photos of the year in chronological order. (Click for a larger view.)

Tahoe Magic
Perfect conditions on the east shore of Lake Tahoe. 

The Language of Sand
Another one from Lake Tahoe. There is a shallow sandy beach here, and the gentle action of the waves often creates intricate patterns around the submerged rocks.

I thought the fog and the suggestion of a tunnel formed by the trees gave this scene a vaguely dream-like quality.

A Moment of Clarity
I have been to this spot in Pescadero many times hoping for an interesting sky to compliment the natural leading lines of the rocks. A clearing spring storm provided just what I had been waiting for.

Spring Morning, Windy Hill
The light from the rising sun managed to sneak in just under the fog, lending some extra drama to this spring scene.

A beautiful sunset as seen from the hills of the San Francisco peninsula. I thought the cattail-like grass in the foreground looked a bit like spectators enjoying the show.

I took this on a four day trip into the Sierra Nevada backcountry. It's a rare and exhilarating thrill when me, my camera gear and good light all manage to converge on these hard-to-reach locations at the same time.

Brewing Storm
I have mixed feelings about this one. It was taken just as I was driving down from the trailhead of the backpacking trip I mentioned above. I was sore, tired, dirty and covered in mosquito bites. But -- with somewhat faulty reasoning -- I thought that my efforts had been rewarded with good pictures. So it was somewhat disconcerting when I took what was arguably the best picture of the week by the side of the road 10 feet from the comfort of my car.

Mono Sunset
This was taken the same day as the previous picture. I had originally intended to go south from Bishop to the Alabama Hills. But the skies in that direction were clear, while to the north there were storm clouds building. I decided to go north towards Mono Lake in the hopes that the storm would clear at sunset. It's nice when things work out as planned.

Ursa Major
This shot made me very happy -- mostly because it represented a second chance I wasn't sure I was going to get. I had taken another Milky Way picture near here (Thousand Island Lake) a couple of years ago. But that was my first attempt at night photography, and I had not yet learned how to compose a scene when I could barely see anything. The results were OK but I thought I could do better. So I was glad to find myself at this location again on another clear, moonless summer night for another try.

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