Here we are in December, almost the end of the year! Time for my “Best of 2018” photographs!
As I’ve done for many years in a row now, I’ve looked through my images over the last year and found the ones that I like the best. These are my personal favorites. Some of the images you may have seen before, and others maybe not. I hope you’ll take the time to look through this assortment of photographs and I surely hope you will enjoy them!
I wish all of you the very best during this Holiday Season, and into the New Year! My warmest wishes to everyone for a happy, adventurous, prosperous, and beautiful New Year in every aspect of your lives!
I customarily show ten images each year in my end of the year post, but I leave you with one extra photograph this year of a peaceful sunset on a farm.
I wish for all of you peace, blessings and harmony always!
This year has gone by really quickly. So much so that I didn’t think I would actually have time to get together my usual end of the year post. These ten images are my personal favorites for the year, or my “Best of 2017”.
This is the 6th year that I have done a “Best of” at the end of the year, and I would like to thank Jim Goldstein for graciously hosting the Best Photos Project each year. You can check out mine and many many other photographers end of the year posts on his blog!
If you would like to see my “Best of” for 2016, you can find that here.
Also if you’d like to go back to 2015, you can check that out here.
After a very stormy spring day in SE. Michigan I was happily surprised by an amazing array of clouds as they moved quickly by during a sunset on a local farm!
You’ll see this lake featured twice here in this post. This image was on a cloudy and extremely still, fall day. The trees, especially the birches gave beautiful reflections in the water!
After all of the leaves had fallen and nothing was left except the crunch of brown and gold underfoot I decided to make just a few images of these beauties!
I had a lot of fun during a couple of fresh and dewy mornings this year photographing the sunlight as it danced off of the dewdrops in the grass. As a lot of you know, I love nature abstracts!
I was extremely happy to have had the opportunity to go to The Tulip Festival in Holland, MI. this past spring!
Every time I’m in Marquette, Michigan I always enjoy the beautiful assortment of rocks and stones in the area. These colorful stones on Presque Isle are some of my favorites!
While at Presque Isle Park I almost always make time to stay for the sunset. It almost never dissapoints!
Munising Falls is beautiful no matter what time of year, but fall is always my favorite!
Lake Plumbago is one of those places I pass by quite often while in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. I would have to say that for me it has almost always been foggy and or raining when I pass by. That of course has its own beauty, and I have plenty of photos from that type of weather, but this time there was a striking difference, and actually quite welcomed!
I have always loved the look of yellow houses with white picket fences, so naturally the first time I set eyes upon the Windermere Hotel on Mackinac Island, it became a must for me to stay there! It is filled with Victorian charm and has such a lovely presence on the Island.
It just happened that this year while on the Island I was graced with bright blue skies which made a wonderful contrast to the beautiful yellow color of the Windermere!
I hope you’ve enjoyed a tiny glimpse into the year of 2017 with me. I wish all of you a very Happy and prosperous New Year, both in your lives and in your photographic adventures! 🙂
I’d like to end this post with one of my favorite quotes.
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. ~ Edward Abbey ~ 🙂
In this first image you’ll see beautiful Lake of the Clouds, which is located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan!
This year as usual when the end of summer approached, I started planning for my fall photography trip or trips. I couldn’t wait to see the world around me turn to gold, orange, and red! As it turned out in Michigan, as well as many parts of the country and world, timing was a bit off. I had to keep changing the dates of my trips to adjust to the lack of fall color where I was going.
Finally in early October things started to look more positive, and I headed for the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, which I do every year, and I wouldn’t miss it for the world!
One of the most beautiful places to me, in the Western UP, is Lake of the Clouds. I drove from the city of Marquette out to The Porcupine Mountains to get there. It was raining heavily the whole way out, but I had been watching the weather forecasts and radar earlier in the day, in hopes that there might be some kind of clearing by the time I arrived.
As you can see from the photograph above the clouds were still thick but oh so beautiful as the rain storm had broken and rays of sun were changing the landscape. I felt such a wave of relief come over me with each passing minute with the continuously changing weather!
Last year, although beautiful in it’s own right, my entire trip to Lake of the Clouds, and indeed most of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, was filled with very heavy rain and thick fog. This time though was wonderfully different and I was so thankful!
After nearly all of the clouds had passed, and as I moved from one vantage point to another, the sun began shining on nearly everthing in late afternoon, illuminating all the trees in their glorious fall color! This was the final payoff before I left the area and made my way back to Marquette.
In Marquette, Michigan at Presque Isle Park I had also been trying to escape the rain. Upon arriving everything was wet with a light drizzle and quite overcast. I decided to enjoy myself regardless of the weather, and honestly in this location there is so much to see, and quite enjoyable no matter the time of year or type of weather!
The clouds began breaking just a bit in different ways which created beautiful reflections in some of the pools of water on these volcanic rocks.
In this last image the sun was shining brightly on the rock with dark clouds in the distance. It created a beautiful contrast to the scene! Darkness and light, warmth versus cool, and plenty of texture!
I hope to share more of my images from my trip to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with you in future blog posts. I surely hope you enjoyed these! 🙂
Earlier this past fall, I made a week long trip to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. I knew that fall color was a little later this year than last so I felt really good about my timing. What I couldn’t predict, and really, who can, was the weather! During the seven days there I had only one day of sunshine, but without a cloud in the sky. The rest of the days were either rainy or at least drizzling and or foggy. I had so hoped to see Lake of the Clouds in good weather. Oh well, it certainly was “In the Clouds” is all I can say! Both fog and mist!
It rained the entire time I was there, and of course I had forgotten to bring an umbrella, so I used shower caps, and other plastic bags to cover my camera and lenses. Anyway, I was thrilled to see this beautiful place no matter what the weather was, but I had hoped to come back with images of gorgeous fall color and amazing clouds! Oh well, at least I did get some amazing fog and mist, and I could see there was wonderful fall color underneath all that fog! 😉
After leaving Lake of the Clouds and the Porcupine Mountains, the weather only got worse. I headed east towards Marquette, having rain coming down in buckets at times, and at other times a drizzle or mist. About halfway between where I was, and where I was going, I passed by Lake Plumbago. My eyes nearly popped out of my head! Wow amazing reflections! I made a U-Turn in the middle of the road and went back to a lovely roadside park next to the lake. It was mildly drizzling at the time so I got out my tripod and camera and spent the next 15 minutes or so there just making photographs of the fall color and reflections and really just enjoying the eye candy!
We’ve had a pretty dreary winter this year, not as much snow, but plenty of clouds. I’m really ready to see some amazing color! I will have to wait half a year or so to see this kind of color again, but in the meantime I’m getting ready for the arrival of spring flowers! I hope your area has started to see some signs of spring, or if you live down under, I hope you are beginning to see some brilliant fall foliage!
In what I consider to be the most glorious and delicious of all seasons, autumn! I’ve chosen quite a few lovely quotes about fall and added some of my recent photographs.
The first image is from the shores of Lake Superior with the leaves in an early state of change, the winds blowing strongly and waves rolling in, crashing against the rock and shoreline!
The second image is from an early morning walk with the sunlight shining brightly through the myriad of colorful leaves on the ground!
Enjoy the images and quotes below!
“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” ~ George Elliot ~
“Just as a painter needs light in order to put the finishing touches to his picture, so I need an inner light, which I feel I never have enough of in the autumn.” ~ Leo Tolstoy ~ as said to Nikolay Strakhov
“Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.” ~ Jim Bishop ~
“..I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house. So I have spent almost all the daylight hours in the open air.” ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne ~
“Just after the death of the flowers,
And before they are buried in snow,
There comes a festival season,
When nature is all aglow—
Aglow with a mystical splendour
That rivals the brightness of spring,
Aglow with a beauty more tender
Than aught which fair summer could bring….”
~ Emeline B. Smith ~
“Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day!
Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree…”
~ Emily Brontë ~
Maybe you’re wondering what I mean with the title “If This then That”. Well many times when I see an object, which in this case is the (This), my mind immediately goes to the idea of (then That). Which translates into making that object an abstract. As some of you might know, I really love free flowing form!
During the fall there were many times I’d see really colorful trees, but not the kind that would make a beautiful macro, or even a full tree photograph. These trees or leaves were not without a lot of flaws, they might have been diseased, or maybe it was really low light as it was almost dark.
Here below are two examples of simple trees with fall color, and also two examples of the abstract motion blur images that I made out of those trees.
If you enjoy abstract photographs, then I think you’ll enjoy these!
Here are the fall leaves, I honestly have no clue what kind of tree this is.
Then this is “Pirouette”, a free form, flowing abstract.
These are yellow leaves of some sort, and red berries.
Then this is the golden yellow abstract I made called “Swirling Autumn”
If for some reason you’ve never tried any abstract photography, motion blur, tree panning, or anything with a longer shutter speed. I urge you to give it a try.
The subject certainly doesn’t have to be leaves or trees. You can literally take just about anything and make into something very free-form, light spirited, and fun!
I hope that everyone has been enjoying a beautiful fall season so far! For those of you on the other side of the world I hope spring is off to a lovely start!
For the most part in my area of the country the fall color has started to fade. I think that I captured as many memories and images as I could, hopefully enough to last me through till next autumn! 😉
This year for some reason seems to have had more than it’s usual share of dark cloudy days with rain and lots of wind too. I try not to let the weather hinder me from going out and enjoying whatever is thrown my way, at least most of the time.
As for these images below. One of them was taken recently, of course on a dark cloudy day! This one happens to be at a local nature preserve. There were many gorgeous and huge maple trees, but the leaves on a smaller one really got my attention. The range of colors on just one tree, so close together on its branches is amazing to me. The wonders of the natural world!! A veritable kaleidoscope of colors!!
This next image was taken during a trip to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Oh yes, it’s true, I seem to go there often and I love it!! The multitude of long country roads just waiting to be explored is amazing!!
I didn’t end up following this dirt road as far as it went, but long enough to enjoy the fall color all around me. The darkness of the grey sky with its drizzle every now and then didn’t put a damper on these colors for sure!
I had really wanted to make it out to the Porcupine Mountains in the far western part of the Upper Peninsula this autumn, but that just didn’t work out. I know there are so many amazing places to see there. I guess that will have to wait till another time.
Have you been able to get in all of your fall travel plans? Did things go as expected, or was the weather uncooperative? Tell me about what you’ve been up to during this glorious time of year!!
Every autumn when colors glow anew I always try to take as many images of the gorgeous foliage as possible. In addition to regular landscape or nature photography, I enjoy making motion blur abstracts.
Both of these images are from the same vibrant tree. Leaves ranging in color from gold to orange, green to brown,and red to yellow!!
I love the feeling of dancing, rustling, and swirling that these images evoke.
It may be just a few days away from official winter, and we may already feel as if we’re in the deep freeze in many places, So I offer to you some autumnal warmth for your eyes and soul!!
A wonderful mural of areas of the city of Ann Arbor Michigan. Painted on a concrete wall that goes under and on either side of a railroad bridge.
Fall color was at it’s peak at the time, so you can see some golden foliage above the railroad also.
I don’t know the artist, I should try to find out.
That will be my next task! 🙂