Top 10 Images Of 2013

20130520_Jokulsarlon_0192_1100px
20130520_Jokulsarlon_0192_1100px

2013 has been a funny year for me, I spent a large amount of the year struggling to find a consistent flow with my photography and I was never happy with what I produced. 2013 was a year where I went looking for the photographer that I want to be, a photographer who can overcome any obstacle thrown at me and never doubt that I could create the image that was in my head no matter how hard it may seem. At times I found it very hard to get the images I wanted, I would argue with myself in frustration and always go back to the drawing board to see where I went wrong. It was a slow year for me, I spent more time thinking/planning the images than actually out with the camera but I don't look back on this with regret because I now feel 110% with my photography. Going to Iceland for 2 weeks really woke me up to my potential, it flung the doors wide open to the possibilities of what I could create when it's provided in front of me. I love trying new things, it's one of the main reasons why I haven't done as much photography but I came out knowing ten times more than I did especially when it comes to timelapse photography and filmmaking. I'm not going to bladder on anymore and now show you my favourite images of 2013!This is probably my favourite image from my trip to Iceland, I was invited to Iceland to work as a tutor for Wild Photography Holidays for 2 weeks during May and it was an incredible trip. My first time on a plane, first holiday away from home and it was to work as a photographer! My dreams were coming true and I couldn't be more happier! The trip was focused along the southern coast of Iceland but we spent a lot of our time around the Jökulsárlón lagoon, an area of beauty and pure wonder. The above image was taken during our first sunset at the lagoon, due to the long days and short nights you get in Iceland at this time of year this image was taken at around 11pm. Trying to compose an image with the ice can be difficult due to the sheer amount of it but when walking along the waters edge for a few minutes I'd find small pockets of water which didn't have as much ice.

Lighthouse - 16 x 9 Photo Series
Lighthouse - 16 x 9 Photo Series

We now go back to Scotland (these images are in no particular order). One thing I wanted to work on was long exposures, now I don't mean just for a few seconds I mean for minutes! When Lucroit (see review here) sent me their amazing filter system they also sent me a 10 stop filter. They are difficult to use, judging your exposures brings on more problems and the ever changing light always has an effect on the image. With lots of practise I was able to start creating long exposures (usually 5 minutes or more) of a scene to create something totally different from what you usually see from me. This image was taken at the end of Ayr pier one evening when the sun had just disappeared behind the horizon.

20130523_Ingolfshofdi_026_1100px
20130523_Ingolfshofdi_026_1100px

I didn't do that much wildlife photography in 2013, I wanted to focus more on landscapes as it's an area I had never taken the time to practise with. I did though have an amazing experience in Iceland with the Puffins of Ingólfshöfði nature reserve, we were treated to hundreds of Puffins on the cliff edges and I walked with some of best bird-in-flight shots I've ever taken. you can see my full blog post of this experience HERE. When we arrived I worked out the flight path of the birds so that I could position myself in area to give me the best chances for the shots that I'm after. Due to how the birds were flying in to the nests it meant there was a small window where they would be backlit with the cliff wall in the background. This was the shot I was after and you can tell by the above, I got it!

20130526_Ptarmigan_080_1100px
20130526_Ptarmigan_080_1100px

Another bird I spent some time with during my trip to Iceland was the elusive Ptarmigan. I had no intention on photographing these birds as due to our schedule I wouldn't of had time to go looking for them. But during our last day we visited the Þingvellir National Park to see the tectonic plates, it was raining and I couldn't find anything that worked photographically. So I just went for a walk where I then found a Greylag Goose wandering around amongst the heather, I stopped and took a few shots but it was when I looked back at the images that I could see a white blob in the background. I zoomed in it and there in the distance was an out-of-focus Ptarmigan. I looked up and could see him on the brow of the hill, I slowly started to walk up to him and I eventually got close enough to get a few shots. I then started to crawl so I could get even closer and I eventually was only 30 yards from. This is one of the shots I took of him.

Golden Sunrise Mute Swan
Golden Sunrise Mute Swan

As you may know I spent a large part of 2012 photographing the Swans around Ayrshire but I eventually finished the project in January 2013 when the Signets were fully grown. After spending a year documenting these amazing birds I had gathered a large collection of images that were very different from another. This image was my most favourite, the morning light lit the water on fire emitting a fiery glow that just looked beautiful on that cold January morning.

20130903_Blackwater_015-2_1100px
20130903_Blackwater_015-2_1100px

As you may already know, I do a lot of my work around the Galloway Forest. It's a beautiful area of Scotland that I feel gets forgotten about. With it's many hills and lochs, it's the number one place I enjoy to be out with my camera. The weather had been pretty miserable during the day but around an hour before the sun had set clouds over the Galloway Hills began to break up filtering through some gorgeous rays of light onto the landscape. I actually did a timelapse of these clouds which you can see in my 2013 Timelapse Showreel: Euphoric Nature (Click Here To See It).

20130526_Gullfoss_003_1100px
20130526_Gullfoss_003_1100px

Gullfoss was a tricky waterfall to photograph in Iceland, I couldn't get an angle of it that I was happy with and we were limited to where you could go as you had to stick to the paths provided. The spray from the waterfall was really bad, so bad that at one point I couldn't see through the viewfinder as the lens was covered in so much water! I didn't walk away empty handed though, I stayed persistent and told myself not to leave until I go an image I was happy with. If you don't force yourself to work harder for your images then you will find it difficult to grow as a photographer.

20130520_Skógafoss_0135_1100px
20130520_Skógafoss_0135_1100px

My favourite waterfall during my trip to Iceland was most definitely Skogafoss, the conditions were great and it wasn't too busy. I was able to work around and plan different compositions. I always say to people before you rush to get your camera because you're very excited to take some images just slow and walk around with no camera and judge the scene with your eyes, look what will work in an image and what won't. Doing this will help plan what shots you want to get. I know I wanted an image of the waterfall close-up but using my 14mm lens to get a different perspective. The image above was taken as close to the waterfall as I could get because the closer you got the more water you got covered in. As soon as I took this image the wind direction changed and I got drenched in water, luckily it didn't affect my camera.

20130511_AyrHarbour_014_1100px
20130511_AyrHarbour_014_1100px

Throughout 2013 I spent a lot of time working along the Ayrshire coast, it was a new area to me and I wanted to explore as much of it as I could. I didn't have a car at the time so I was limited to where I could get to so on some days I would just walk down to Ayr pier as it was only a 10 minute walk from where I used to live. I think every photographer has their favourite conditions for photographer, I know mine. I love the evening light after a heavy storm, I don't know what I like about it but the clouds are dramatic with powerful light breaking through and you tend to see more colour. That's what happened when I took the above image, it had been raining all day but the Met Office app said there was going to be a bit of sunlight in the evening. They weren't wrong!

20131122_TL_MilkyWay_058_1100px
20131122_TL_MilkyWay_058_1100px

I finished 2013 on a high, I may have not taken as many shots as I would have liked but I had some experiences out with my camera that I will never forget. I finished the year off working on my timelapse work (which you're going to see a lot more of) as I wanted to release a showreel of my timelapse work from 2013. One thing I wanted to do was a timelapse of the milky way, with all the bad weather we had over the winter the idea of me photographing the stars had gone out the window but one evening when visiting my parents in the Galloway Forest there was a cloud in the sky enabling me get my best "starlapse" yet!

So what is 2014 going to bring me? A lot more travelling, a lot more images, a lot more timelapse and few surprises over the year to push my career even further! I'm now confident with my work, happy with my style and all I want to do in 2014 is focus on my photography and share it with you all. I would just like to thank my family, friends, sponsors and everyone who has supported me through the last few years. Your support has not gone unnoticed!

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});