I chose this as my Best of the year for the same reason I chose it for the monthly best of. It is the clearest and most compelling story to me. Others have good stories, some of the stories you only understand if you know what is behind the picture. But anyone who has ever taken a child up to meet a “character” and had them suddenly turn away knows what is happening here. There are a thousand details that tell me more, but anyone can build a complete narrative here. So we close out the year and I begin another year of photograhpy.
Well another month down and now I have been doing a photo challenge for almost an entire year!
What a year it has been!
So I like to choose the photo that tells the best story. Not always just the best technical shot but rather the best story. I have two this month both from the same weekend.
July has wrapped up and I think this has been a really good month for me.
Much of it was dedicated to bonus posts that gave a showcase of my PRIDE photographs, you can see them on my Flickr Feed.
I also highlighted the Cultures of India a performance that I was able to see. But before that at another Rochester Music festival I was able to get this portrait. I am highlighting this because it represents what I love about photographing artists and musicians. I strive to capture the moment where they forget about the audience and are lost in the music.
The very best one of the month is one of my last. It represents my style. Highlighting that which might go unnoticed. A pool of rubber ducks wearing goggles. I managed to get such a perfect angle with only one “looking” dead on. You can see the rest of my Fair photos on my Flickr Feed.
I did not get a lot of traction on this set so perhaps it is not the best executed photos of June. However I am still setting them as my personal best of June.
I like this set because it means whatever you want it to mean. It is a simple commentary on the inseparable combination of patriotism and religion. How that makes you feel is based on your point of view.
So I think this set challenges, and that is what good art should do.
Invariably near the beginning of the month I take a shot that I think is the absolute best picture I have ever taken and it will be my Best of the Month. Then the one I choose is always one closer to the end of the month.
I think that this happens for two reasons, first my skill is growing each month which is good. I look back at earlier pictures and posts and I see how each shot could have been done better, clearer, how i would have re framed it. Some are still perfect. Ironically the first picture I took on this daily journey – which is of a dragonfly on a leaf – became my best of 2012 and is still one of the best I’ve ever taken.
The second reason the picture I take near the beginning of the month is viewed so often and in my head all month. So when I choose my “Best” I am actually kind of tired of the picture. But the more recent image is more interesting to me.
This time I was not just looking at best technical or artistic, but what image do I want to choose to represent me as an artist?
So I chose this pair of angels is it sums up what I do as a photographer. It is beauty in the unremarkable, plain or decaying. It is two statues in a moderately maintained cemetery that would be largely ignored by anyone not connected to the family. I chose to shoot them because I wanted to show the two identical angels on two separate gravestones because it’s a common theme to see the same angel over many different graves. I love taking the small things left behind and creating art out of it.
It is also a good representation because it’s a happy accident, I did not see the small smiley face ring on the angel in the foreground until I was processing the photos from the shoot. And yet that little ring just makes the picture.
It is also a good representation of my art because it’s dominated by a single color theme. Recently I noticed that the majority of my pictures are dominated by a color. I could easily sort most of my photography into colors. This one is no exception. And again the little yellow ring sits in sharp contrast to the thematic color of the shot.
So below is what I consider the best of May because it best represents me as an artist. Do you agree?