If you’re not new to my work or this blog, you’ll know that I’ve been doing photo year in reviews for nearly a decade. It’s taken me pretty much that entire time to settle on a format that works for me. The first rule I follow is that each of these images was taken solely for my own personal art. To me, this makes a difference in how I feel about a photo. That’s not to say I don’t take photos that I love where I’m getting paid to take them, but the bulk of my paid work is my standard grey background headshot. As tempting as it is to do a “100 of my best grey background headshots of the year,” even I would not want to look at that out of sheer boredom.
It took a few years to decide on the number of images – and 100 is my magic number. 100 is still a lot, but I had about 2000 personal photos to sort through so this is my top 5%. That said, this is always a very difficult thing for me to decide on. It’s also not unusual for me to have large numbers of images that were taken on the same day or are of the same person or the same place. This year I didn’t photograph many models, but the few I did photograph were epic shoots that had a lot of images that I loved. And we only took a couple of trips this year, back to Astoria and Cape Disappointment, and another Joshua Tree stop. I also took a zillion photos from Disneyland visits and I’m forever obsessed with their Star Wars land.
In the past, I’ve written detailed descriptions of photos, where and how they were taken, what they meant to me, etc. It’s hard to justify taking that sort of time with every single image, so last year I got the idea of numbering each individual photo. This seems like a good compromise for me because the numbering makes it very easy for anyone to refer back to one of my images and ask me something about it. And yes, I do sell prints for all of my work (except the Disneyland stuff for licensing reasons). So if you have any desire to learn more about any of these photos, just comment with your question and the photo number and I’ll give you every detail I can remember.
And what can I say about 2022? Like many years it had highs and lows, but as much as I’d like to be the “glass-is-half-full” person – I found this year to be challenging and isolating. I don’t know if it’s a combination of getting older, my primary Instagram account getting deleted for no reason, lingering pandemic stuff, or what – but 2022 was the year of cancellations. I had many creative shoots that got canceled for a variety of reasons. Hangouts with friends were canceled for a variety of reasons. Etc. etc. Is my personal photography headed toward urban and nature landscapes devoid of people? Or will 2023 bring humans back in front of my camera? I am hopeful things swing back that way.