My favorite photos of 2016
As I am writing this, it is 20 degrees out there. Living in Austin, Texas, cold weather like this is not exactly common, and even my car doesn't know how to deal with it, My tire gauge sensor seems to be having trouble reading the cold air. Sitting at my dining room table with my MacBook, sipping the dark roast filtered coffee with hazelnut coconut creamer, and my dog Mimi is sitting on my lap reading what I am writing about 2016; seems like a perfect way to start my winter day. Morning sunlight slowly creeps in from the east facing windows, although the light is not warming up the room, it feels like the perfect time to reflect on my photography journey in 2016.
Why Look Back?
Spending too much time reminiscing about the past probably not the most time-efficient thing we can do in life. However, once in a while, it is helpful to pause and look back, to analyze, and to learn more about yourself, to ensure healthy growth.
As a photographer, when I reviewed my photos in 2016, I could see things that I tried, subjects that I shot the most or editing styles that I experimented. In a way, my work helps me to understand myself more and shows me the progress I achieved. It also helps me to figure out what works and what does not. To continue to improve, I will need to make modifications or to break the pattern I feel comfortable with.
Controlling My GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome)
I love buying new cameras. Camera companies have been trying to charm us with new technologies every few months. Photography gears are getting more and more advanced, and I couldn't help myself being obsessive about it. Buying a new camera is exciting; photographing with new features is intriguing, but what its not helping is my creativity. Every time I got a new camera, I spent too much time learning the new features and getting used to the camera. I wasn't focusing on content creating.
In the past few months, I have been trying not to purchase new photographic gears. It wasn't that challenging since I have been spending more time in my illustration work. Without extra spare time, I can instead focus on the content I want to create. It is liberating not to feel like I need new cameras to improve my photography work. By continuing to use cameras that I already have, that I once highly desired, and remain highly capable, I can be more productive. As a photographer, I always remind myself that I don't have to be good at everything, or every subject. Instead, I need to focus on what interests me the most and continue shooting subjects that I feel are meaningful.
Apart from criticizing myself and without contradicting what I said, it is also important for me to see my improvement and feel good about it. Recognizing the changes I made to enhance my work, I can trail my growth and nurture myself to become a more creative person. I truly believe that 2016 has been a great year for my photography growth and I appreciate all the travel opportunities that allowed me to experience life from different perspectives.
Here are some of my favorites, please tell me which image you like the most.
May (San Antonio)
September (Washington D.C.)
September (Rehoboth Beach)
November (San Diego)
December (New Orleans)