Friday, January 10, 2020

2019 Year End Review

Well, another year has come and passed.  This year has been a different year photographically.  I have shot way more sports than I have anything else.  This is due to kids being involved in way more sports than usual.  I don't share those as those are for me mostly, but it's awesome to try and compare your shots to those in the sports illustrated magazine.  Someday, I will reach another goal of shooting a Nebraska game.  While I didn't get to shoot as much wildlife and sunsets as before, it was rewarding just the same.  I am also noticing from my review that I shot a lot of birds this year which is surprising as I view myself as more of a landscape first type of photographer.

I also began something that I have been dreaming of doing since I was a kid, shooting deep sky objects and trying to document my own Messier catalog.  I have tried many subjects and am still learning, but it is a joy to see Andromeda and other wonders of night sky taken with my camera on screen.  It is really something completely different to process and I am still learning, but am looking forward to getting better and producing some amazing night sky shots.

I also started a new Instagram group of Nebraska for everyone.  All types of photos are welcome.  Please visit Its_Awesome_Nebraska. Please tag it or use the hashtags noted to be featured.

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Sunday, December 16, 2018

2018 Year End Review

2018 was a challenging year for me photographically.  I found it hard to push myself creatively due to commitments, motivation, and overall lack of things to shoot.  I didn't see the usual eagle migration, which was a bummer.  Most of the sunsets that I saw this year were not from the back of my camera, but rather from the yard (this was a positive).  I did get to see the mountains of Colorado for the first time and discovered what it's like on one of the busiest days in Rocky Mountain National Park.  Additionally, I discovered that I am not a fan of little roads in tall mountains without any type of shoulder.  I think it is safe to say I prefer to look up at the mountains rather than look down on the valleys.  I started to put food out for my little bird friends and soon discovered that there really are only a couple birds that enjoy my yard.  The ones that did come were colorful and seemed to have an attitude.  I did get to see the pelican and cormorant migration for a day which provided some great photos.

I crossed six of my photographic goals off my list this year.  I got to see and photograph a snowy owl.  That was definitely on the top of the bucket list.  I also caught a single photo of a loon.  I had a close encounter with an osprey which yielded a nice fall backdrop.  With tips from some photography friends I captured a couple of great hummingbirds photos.  I also mastered photographing frozen bubbles, which was one thing I have always struggled to do in the past.  Can't wait until it is cold enough to try some cool lighting.   Lastly, I photographed the mountains.  Definitely want to do the last one again but with less people, an easier drive and more time!

This year a friend of mine approached me about displaying my work.  For those of you traveling through Stuart, NE, be sure to stop at the Cast Iron Bar & Grill to have some delicious home cooked food and view some of my artwork on the walls.

Nebraska Life Magazine also picked a couple of my photos this year to show in their magazine.  One winning the year end showcase shot and one to head an article about winter scenes.  Nothing more awesome than seeing your work in a magazine!

What's in store for 2019?  Well, I am going to try and expand my social media reach and try to post a new photo daily, whether it be on Facebook, 500px, Twitter or Instagram.  I tend to post more on instagram, which if you really wanted to follow my photography would be the place to start.  I might even work a little harder on a YouTube channel with some tutorials or video work.  I tried my hand at a VLOG, but need to do a little more work on presentation before that goes live.

I have discussed doing a write up story for Nebraska Life, but am having trouble coming up with something awesome.  I know inspiration is out there, but just need to find the time to find it.  I am also going to network a little more to gather some inspiration from some of my colleagues and other creatives in the area.  I have a goal this year to travel to more of Nebraska and capture some of the icons of my state.  The Sandhill Crane Migration seems like a good start.  Maybe I'll try to sneak in a little Chimney Rock, Toadstool, and Niobrara River lands as well.  We'll see what the year brings.  

Below are some of my favorites from 2018.  (click to enlarge)  You can find them all for sale on my website, Alder Images.