It seems to be the time of the year when everyone is posting their favorite images from the past year, so naturally (and for the 3rd year in a row) I'll hop on the bandwagon, as well. It's always fun to look back at my work from the past 12 months and reflect on the incredible places I've been lucky to visit, the people I've been luck to go on adventures with, and how my photography has grown, as well as where I still want to improve.
In 2017, as in years past, I took a lot of photos – 16,842, to be exact! For the first time, however, the number of photos I took actually decreased from the previous year. I visited and revisited many familiar and favorite spots: Lick Brook in Ithaca, Mounts Jo and St. Regis in the Adirondacks, Mount Shuksan in North Cascades National Park, to name a few. I also traveled to new and unfamiliar places, as well: first and foremost were my three weeks in Tanzania last July, but I also spent time in Colorado, the eastern Sierra Nevada, and the area around Mount Hood, in Oregon. Both the familiar and the novel provide gratifying opportunities for taking pictures. While the joy I get from exploring a beautiful spot for the first time can't be overstate, this year I found myself perhaps even more drawn to return to the same spots over and over, becoming more and more comfortable there. I think it's through this intimate connection with a particular landscape that my photography will continue to grow, and become more of a reflection of what draws me there, not merely a snapshot of superficial beauty. This drive for greater depth was something that emerged from my first formal photography class I've ever taken, and independent study with a professor in the art department back at Cornell, photographing the autumn scenery of upstate New York. While frequently frustrating, and often the source of giggling amongst friends (who can keep a straight face after being told to "imagine you've walked in on Mother Nature with her pants down"?), I absolutely believe that the guidance I received from my professor at Cornell was valuable, in the end, and I'm looking forward to see what opportunities 2018 holds for me to further deepen the impact of my images.
Here I've selected 30 or so images based on their diversity, how well they capture my year's worth of experiences, and of course, how much I like them. Right-click on a picture and select "open in new tab" to see it larger, read the caption if you're curious to learn where it was taken, and please don't hesitate to reach out with comments or questions – I always appreciate them.