Happy New Year!
Goals & Aspirations
I don't know about you, but I am frankly shocked that I'm sitting here on New Year's Eve - already. I do like to look back on the past year and set goals for the upcoming year. I always write a letter to myself for the next year and then open it on New Year's Day. Fun to see what made the cut and what I didn't succeed at - and decide if the things I didn't get done are worth putting on the list for next year. I've had a trip to Alaska on my list for a few years now. I think 2019 might be the year that happens. I'm itching to see that landscape and possibly some of the wildlife.
In 2018 I connected with three other women who are avid wildlife photographers. We have bonded through photography and are planning some excursions this year. The burrowing owl photos in the image below (third on right of top row) are a direct result of having made those connections. The fox image is also a result of knowing these women. I'm excited to add at least one trip with them to my goals for next year. I will share more about that in another blog entry.
Most photographers I know are on Instagram these days - it's an endless source of inspiration and discovery for me. I love having a jewel case of new images to pore over and enjoy. And it's interesting to see what photos I posted were deemed 'most popular' this past year. In Instagram terms, that means they got the most 'likes' from people who follow me. In the grand scheme of things, that doesn't mean much, but looking over the top nine does indicate a pretty clear pattern. Tulips and owls. And oh yeah, a fox kit.
In many ways, I'm not surprised these images hit my top nine. They are mostly flashy and make for good eye candy on Instagram, where people scroll by on their phones. I am surprised, though, that the first image in this group landed here. It's a picture of my first poster, published by Third & Wall. I'm excited to have a poster out there in retail-world and it seems my followers were excited for me.
But this isn't how I judge my most successful images for the year. Yes, the owl pictures were a triumph for me - I love waiting and watching and hoping to catch an action shot. The fox kits were pure joy to watch and photograph and I was thrilled to add them to my wildlife files. But this year I also had the chance to photograph a part of the world I never expected to get to - Costa Rica - thanks to a dear friend who took me there. Hiking through the jungle and happening upon birds, monkeys, anteaters, tapirs. . . it was truly a thrilling experience for me. The photos I made in Costa Rica won't win any wildlife photography awards, but they hold precious memories for me. I learned a lot - macaws are incredibly fast and difficult to shoot when flying - and I know what I can do better, thanks to all that practice trying to capture images of tropical birds. If I'm learning and I happen to get a few images I like, I'm happy.
Another, more important measure, of my year in photography is what images compelled people to order prints. Some of them surprised me, some of them are among my personal favorites, so I was very happy to know other people liked them enough to want them hanging on their walls.
Here's a sampling of my top-selling images from 2018:
Wry FieldYoung wheat disguises an old barn in the background.
Tulip ColorsRows of color spread across commercial tulip fields become a blur.
Fox Kits-5A gray fox kit runs for the fun of it.
Balancing ActA tiny tree frog hangs on the edge of a pitcher plant, scouting for flies that may come to feed.
Short Eared Owl-1
I am grateful for everyone who purchased my cards, calendars and prints this year. Your support enables and encourages me to continue to push myself and perfect my work.
If you saw an image this year that you thought about purchasing, but never got around to it, I'm offering a 10% discount on ALL purchases from this web site through the end of February. Just create an account and place your order through this site. I will apply the discount at the time I review the order.
I plan to retire images from this site later in the year, but I will let you know before I remove anything.
In the meantime, I hope your New Year brings you everything you wish for. And thank you for following me. I will continue to post pictures on Facebook and Instagram throughout the year.