I can’t believe that its the end of another year — it seems to have gone in a blur. What do I remember, photographically speaking, of 2012? Well, it didn’t start off too well when my tripod collapsed and broke my camera on a wet Dartmoor morning, but it got a lot better. I think I can safely say that my output improved over the course of the last 12 months. There are still things I would like to improve — on location composition for example as I do tend to crop a little too much in post production — but I can look back over the last 12 months with a feeling of satisfaction.
When compiling this list of favourites I thought of just picking out my faves and posting them but, after a bit of thought, I chose to post one favourite from each month. This way I don’t, perhaps, have all of my best images from 2012 in this post but I do have something representative of the year as it unfolded.
So, in chronological order, here are my personal favourites from Jan-Dec 2012:
January – Nine Sisters
My DSLR was still at the repairers in January so I ventured out with my old film camera and a couple of rolls of B&W film. The results were OK but not really up there with my digital stuff. This is a shot of the nine sisters stone circle near Belstone Tor on Dartmoor.
February – Bowermans Nose
A pretty standard location but my first outing with the newly-repaired DSLR. It was a cold February afternoon on the moor but the light was great and I was really pleased to be out and about again.
March – Kingswear Daymark Tower
I had planned a visit to the Daymark for some time and particularly at this time of year as I figured that the angle of the sunrise would be about right. Its a location I would like to visit more but its too far from home for casual excursions. However I plan to return in 2013.
April – Otter Estuary Sunrise
I had planned this return to the mouth of the River Otter at high tide to get a shot of the sun rising through the trees. When I previously tried this shot there were no clouds at all. This time there were a few more but it still wasn’t the sky I was really looking for with this shot. Time to try again in 2013 then …
May – Porth Joke
This was taken on a family holiday to Cornwall. I didn’t have many chances to get away and do any photography but I did get one or two “evening passes” and spent a very enjoyable couple of sunsets at the headland overlooking Porth Joke. It was too early for the famous poppies but the thrift was in full bloom and, having perched myself precariously on the clifftop, made a nice lead in to the sunset.
June – Southend Pier
The first of my long exposures of the year, taken with a 10 stop ND filter. With family living in Essex, my photography is not limited to Devon and I do get several opportunities a year to try new locations. I quite like this one.
July – Brixham
A friend from work has recently been bitten by the photography bug and asked if I would join him on a few occasions over the summer to help him along. This was the first excursion and a shameless suggestion from me that we visit somewhere I’d been meaning to photograph for a little while. I needed a high tide and wanted the blue hour. The only thing I don’t like about this one is that the water in the harbour isn’t absolutely still as fishermen were whizzing back and forth to their boats all the time.
August – Porlock Weir
With the weather forecast promising rain all day at home, I looked at the map to see where I might stay dry and the northern coast of Somerset looked promising. So, Porlock Weir it was. Unfortunately it was a low spring tide so all of the interesting groynes and coastal structures were fully exposed. Therefore I decided to make the most of the shoreline and found this spot where the rocks swept around and out to sea. I had time to make a few exposures before the family got a bit bored with me and we set off to explore elsewhere.
September – Teignmouth Pier
An outing when the weather forecast didn’t quite go to plan — or at least the precision with which it was presented. It was overcast at Teignmouth and my original plans didn’t come off. Just as I was beginning to pack up to go home I thought I’d try a crack at another long exposure. The movement in the clouds in the 2 minute exposure makes the shot.
October – Upper Teign Valley
Dawn looking down the Upper Teign Valley from just below Castle Drogo
November – Brentor Church
or The Church of St Michael de Rupe to give it its proper name. Yes this is a bit of a photographic cliche location but I’d never visited before and a showery November afternoon seemed an ideal time to cross my fingers and hope for some side lighting. The weather obliged.
December – Marshwood Vale Mist
Possibly my favourite of the year. An old viewpoint which I’d not been to since 2008. Well, actually I went in October but the combination of light and mist didn’t come off due to a large bank of cloud on the horizon. However on this occasion everything clicked into place and gave me my most viewed image on Flickr to boot.
So that’s it — I could have posted a different 12 but the collection is representative of the last 12 months. Hopefully I’ll be able to post something equally as pleasing to me this time next year. What I really hope is for a continued improvement in both luck and technique. I hope I have fun trying …