16 from 2016 - My Year in Photos

In no particular order, here are my favorite pictures I took from 2016 and the story behind them. Most of these photos were taken as part of my 365 project.

My 365 project taught me a lot of things this year and Long Exposure photography is one of those things. This is one of the first long expsosure shots I took. I’m very happy and proud of how it turned out. I continued to work on this form of photography throughout the year.

For the last few years, my town has put on an event during the summer called ‘Imagine Norwalk’ and this photo was taken after a band had performed in front of the Norwalk Theater and the members were lingering before leaving. I love this photo because of how candid and in the moment it is. I was across the street and just walking by when I stopped to watch this band finish. I really like how the theater is looking (it has been undergoing a remodel) and how it’s all lit up and lights the scene very well.

This is a perfect example of why I continue my 365 project. If I had not been out shooting my picture for the day I would not have gotten this shot and I really like this photo. I love shooting nature and animals and this little guy was fun to chase around. The composition is perfect and my subject was very cooperative.

This shot was the fitst one I chose when putting together this list and these images. The website that I run my 365 project on has a theme every week and during the week that I took this photo the theme was flags. More importantly than that, it was during the week of July 4th, which is when I took this photo. I knew for the holiday that I wanted something strong and symbolic. With this photo I wanted to reflect upon the other side of Indepedence Day and pay tribute to those who fight to keep us free.

Tookapic launched their iOS app this year and I got to help beta test it and this was a photo I took to commemorate the event.

This year has been huge for me on many levels, but especially in terms of my personal life. Photography is something I am trying to approach more seriously as I would like to do this full-time in the future, but for now, I still need to keep my day job. This year I took an adult education class at our local vocational school (pictured here) to help get a better job. It was an incredible experience and has been one of the best decisions I ever made. Education is always worth it.

As part of my 365 project, I started a small series about these toy whales. They really helped me get more creative with my photos and helped me learn to tell more of a story with my photos. You can see more here - Whale Series on Tookapic

This is another photo that immediately came to mind when making this list. I was at my parent’s house and they had a giant bonfire with a lot of wood and cardboard. It was very large but we had it under control, however a neighbor called the fire department not very long after we started. The firfighters said that our fire was beyond the legal limit for our area so they were forced to put it out. As they started to hose it down, I got this shot. It’s one of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken. I love the look and feel. The orange is vibrant and I was able to silhouette the firefigther and make it almost like a portrait. I’m very proud of this photo.

This photo doesn't have story, it was just one I took for my 365 project and I really like it.

What I really like about this photo was that it was not originally planned at all, the whole thing happened very suddenly. I came out and as I was getting out of my car I stepped into a huge pile of leaves and after I looked closer, I saw that they were mostly clean and in good shape. Right there on the spot I decided to bring them inside and use them for my photo that day. This is what I came up with. I was aiming to show off the colors of the season.

This is a photo that I wanted to take for a while at the time but the weather was not cooperating. After a few days of rain, things calmed down and I was able to go out and capture this picture. The whole point was to show off the fall colors in the leaves. This is another long exposure photo which helped get that super smooth reflection in the water.

This photo comes from shooting my friends’ wedding in November. This was a fun challenge because it was my first time shooting a wedding. I was pretty nervous going into the event because I wasn't sure what types of shots I wanted to get but I knew I wanted to tell the story of the day. Once the event started things happened very naturally and I was able to focus and capture some really great moments. I’m extremely happy with how all of the images came out and I would like to shoot more weddings in the future. You can see all of the photos from this shoot here.

Just like any other pet owner, I absolutely love taking pictures of my animal! This is my adorable cat Chestnut. I probably took over 200 photos of her this past year but I narrowed it down to this one and the next one. These two photos are definitely some of the best ones I’ve ever gotten of her. This photo is currently my most popular one I have posted on Tookapic. I love her expression and how the light and contrast balanced.

Again, this is one of the best pictures I’ve gotten of her. She absolutely loves the Christmas tree. I recently decided to make a Facebook page for my photography and this is one of the first posts I made on that page and people have really responded well!

As I mentioned above, this has been a big year for me. On top of everything else I mentioned, I also picked up a new hobby: sewing! Being 5'4" it can be difficult to find clothes that fit perfect off the rack, so I decided to do someting about it.

Here we have the final image of list. This is another long exposure photo and it’s my favorite one I have taken so far. The sunset, the flare, the reflections of the sky and the bridge - it’s all perfect. I love how it almost has a day and night look with the purple tones.

I hope you had a great year as well! Here's to a new year full of new potential and even better photos. Best wishes to everyone in 2017!

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