Saturday, December 29, 2012

Keeper Dozen 2012

Picking my 12 favourite photographs of the year has become a yearly custom. It was triggered by a group at Flickr (Keeper Dozen), which was inspired by an Ansel Adams quote: "Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop." Here is the 2012 countdown from 12 to 1.

12. Mouth piece
A shot of mine that appeals to me far more than to most viewers on Flickr. In May, we took a jazz boat tour on the river IJssel. Especially the Kampen based saxophone quartet Saxozie was a delight to listen to. The lighting conditions were sub-optimal, but I like what I got here in a close-up of one of their instruments. Extreme use of dof, and placement of the mouth piece on a golden ratio point, for those interested in composition.

11. Paris sunset
This shot, a souvenir from our September trip to Paris, did not get as many positive responses as I had hoped for when I posted it on Flickr. Still, it is one of my own favourites of the year. Pushed the contrast to extremes in the post-processing to emphasize the silhouette effect.

10. Deventer patterns
This shot has become a bit of a hit on Tumblr in the course of the year. It is a close-up, through the display window, of a wedding dress, rotated 90 degrees for a more abstract feeling.

9. Shaken not stirred
One of my most popular shots of the year in terms of faves. It is a straightforward flipped reflection of Kampen houses mirrored in one of the canals near our home. It is sufficiently different from my usual water reflections to warrant including it.

8. The eye of the storm
This is a detail of a paper art work by Elsa Visser that we saw during the Kampen Art Route, a 2-day tour in April to explore the various artists our new home town has to offer. From a composition point of view, the important characteristics here are the plethora of leading lines and the golden ratio (placement of the "eye of the storm" on a golden ratio focal point). And of course the conversion to black and white to further emphasize the line play.

7. November reflections
My colourful water reflections series, usually shot at the canal near our home, turned out to be among the most popular of my photographs, as well as scoring high on my personal list of favourites. It was difficult to choose only a few for this list. Composition-wise, this is strong on the diagonals, creating a great feeling of depth as well.

6. Autumnal
Another water reflection, which is quite different from most of them. It shows the leafless trees reflecting in the canal near our home, with the yellow leaves drifting on the water - flipped upside down for more effect.

5. IJsselmuiden
This is the view, just one minute walking from our home, across the river IJssel to the little village of IJsselmuiden. The autumn fog on the river and the stunning sky make a beautiful combination.

4. Another reflected abstract
Another expressionist colourful abstract which I shot just a few minutes walking from our home, at Kampen's beautiful canal. My trademark 90 degrees flip creates an unusual pattern.

3. Eye contact
In April, we enjoyed the Kampen Art Route, a 2-day tour to explore the various artists our new home town has to offer. This photograph is a close-up of a paper sculpture by Elsa Visser. From a composition point of view, the important characteristics here are the use of negative space and the golden ratio (placement of the eye on a golden ratio focal point).

2. October water reflections
This water reflection shot, taken as usual at the Kampen canal, is my most faved photograph of the year, and scored high in Explore (the other three shots to reach Explore did not come close to my list of 12 favourites). It is also one of my own favourites of all time.

1. Harbor wall abstraction
This is my favourite shot of the year, and one of the best I have ever created in my opinion. It is actually not what many people think: there is no shadow play at work here at all. The shape I captured and cropped like this is the decoration of the Kampen harbor.