Happy New Year everyone! 2013 was a mixed year for me photographically. It was the year of prizes. I still cant believe my luck at some of the prizes I brought home this year, I honestly don't believe my images are any better than the majority of my peers and friends, but somehow I seemed to pick the right shot for the right competition. It was also great to see many of my friends also doing well and getting recognition.
I didn't manage to actually take as many shots as I would like to have done in 2013 though! I think I went through a bit of a "I'm bored of Perth" stage, and so that is something I need to work on this year. Having said that, when I did go out with the camera, I managed to get a few keepers, and I'll share those below.
I started out with good intentions, and a girl's roadtrip driving around the wheatbelt town of Beverley. I love these outings, laughter is good for the soul. I snapped the following image "Patience", as I like lonely trees. I'm usually pretty quick to edit an image, but this one I couldn't quite get right, and so it was a couple of months later that I finally processed it the way I wanted. This image was rewarded with a 3rd place in Landscape at Click West, and formed part of the portfolio that won my Canon 5D III.
I spent a couple of nights in Albany with the fabulous Tina Bartley in early February. The first evening turned out to be quite eventful when an electrical storm developed offshore from The Gap. Well neither of us had captured lightning before, so we were quite excited to be catching multiple strikes in a single exposure. Then suddenly there is the loudest thunderclap, accompanied by a blinding flash and a buzzing in the air. I look at Tina, and she is lying face down on the ground. Turns out she was fine, just wanted to be lower than me so if another one hit, it would be me that fried (she has strong survival instincts!). We grabbed our gear and ran, though it was hard to see when you are crying with laughter. Maybe a little bit too close for comfort!
Another shot from Albany, this time before the near death experience:
Preparing for Click West, in March I went in search of B&W Architecture shots. It was quite a learning experience, and fun to shoot something different. My take on Perth's iconic Bell Tower was a finalist in the Click West Architecture category
I attempted a few sunset shoots in April, but most were spoilt by clear skies. My best effort was possibly a sunrise shoot from South Perth foreshore. I had forgotten how peaceful sunrise shoots can be.
A business trip to Sydney in May provided a few opportunities to shoot something new! Fortunately we were staying in a hotel on Manly beach, close to a couple of ocean pools :-)
Winter in Perth, but still pretty mild weather! This image of Autumn leaves was one of my favourites of the year
The beginning of June was also the Canon Click West Awards, a fabulous evening at Hoyts cinema with entries shown on the big screen! They maybe should rename the event the Canon Click West Ladies Awards, as I think it was a clean sweep for the girls this year. Actually, Tina won most things, including an amazing cruise, but was kind enough to leave the camera for me with Tilbs taking the other podium position. My 2nd place portfolio included the following images:
June was a pretty busy month it seems, with a girl's trip to Dwellingup also:
A highlight this year was the opportunity to photograph my friend Shelley's horses. As a child I looked after a pony, and while these two were certainly a bit bigger than little "Lennie", they totally fascinated me and were perfect models.
The WAPF held their annual event for WA camera clubs in Merredin, a tiny town halfway to Kalgoorlie in the wheatbelt. I was accompanied by Nicole (my usual partner in crime), and we did not stop laughing the whole weekend. Had a fantastic time. We had also both been busily learning video techniques with our cameras for the Nikon Film Festival competition associated with the event. Nicole took out top honours with a 3rd place for me, we were stoked!! The other highlight was a quick helicopter flight over Merredin (doors off!). Now that is something I want to do again, and I got a few photos that I was really happy with.
Each September is the Canon Photos 5 competition, where entrants are provided 5 items in a box with specific themes. I have entered for the past 4 years now, and it is a source of great excitement, frustration, scandal and disappointment! I have come close to prizes a couple of times, but success still eludes me!!!!! This year's effort (reflection, flour, jelly, googly eyes and stencil) and I have to say, I do become quite obsessed about this comp!
September is also home to "Spring In The Hills", a photography competition/exhibition run by my camera club. I was incredibly happy to be awarded first place for my Chatsworth tree image (taken in 2012) that I had printed on canvas.
Once Photo5 was over my attention switched to the Golden Shopping Trolley Awards (Tony Hewitt and Christian Fletcher's urban landscape competition). I trawled shopping centre carparks, filthy industrial areas and numerous backstreets in search of "ugly shit". Perserverance paid off (at the November awards night), with my "mini speakers" (air conditioning units on a school roof) taking 2nd place (and earning me a fabulous Eizo monitor) and my Tank shot winning the specialist category (and Manfrotto/Kata vouchers for Team Digitial).
Tried to get a few landscape shoots together, but was thwarted by clear skies again. Wanting to come home with something to edit I got down in the sand and shells at Trigg.
It was a similar tale on a family holiday to Dunsborough, 2013 just wasn't my lucky year for clouds. This was the most promising of the afternoons there, but the clouds vanished before sunset.
I made a few trips to the beach in December, but this simple image of the surf on the beach is by far my favourite.
Well, that's all folks!!!! I expect I'm talking to myself at this point.
I'm looking forward to 2104 and whatever opportunities present. There is plenty to learn, and a few exciting things planned.