It is the tradition to indulge in retrospects during the last weeks of every year. Media is full of 2017 medleys and photographers very often join the crowds and post their personal favorites from a year of shooting. I am always a bit reluctant to do what everybody else does just because everybody else does it, but looking back with the goal of self-assessment and becoming aware of one's own path certainly has its charms. So I decided to present some of my favorite photographs of recent trips and sessions; but in order to break with arbitrary slice of time that is a calendar year, I dug a little bit deeper and excavated my 18 personal favorites from the last 18 months. This is what I take into 2018 and what I built my artistic development on.
Landscape and nature photography has slowly evolved from a small hobby fueled by some exciting trips to Western Canada in 2010 and the US Southwest in 2012 into a way I see the natural world that surrounds me. It has been a gradual process of developing subjectivity that accelerated significantly on an extremely inspiring photo trip to Arctic Norway in winter 2015. The Lofoten Islands in winter are full of iconic views and overwhelming compositions, this means as a photographer you are virtually standing at the crossroads and can turn into the well-paved alley of shooting the obvious under dramatic light or surrender to the urge to find your own, individual way of portraying the majestic landscape. I was shooting both kind of photographs, but looking back it's the latter that mean the most to me. A seed was planted and it grew significantly over the course of the last one and a half years. The seed may be called intimate landscapes, but I rather think of it as subjective, individual portraits of wild places. These portraits speak volumes about the places they were made at, but more importantly they show the way I see them.
The second aspect that I found to be essential to my photography is exploring. I've always felt the itch to travel far far away and the major motivation that drives my photography is seeing new, wild places all over the world. Over the course of the last 18 months I had the chance to shoot in Norway, Ireland, Austria, Germany, South Africa and Portugal and it has been amazing to wake up to new horizons, to paths that were novel to me and to light that was unlike any that I've ever seen. On top of that developing further my photographic approach and style enabled my to visually explore without traveling. Seeing new things in the known and the unknown, taking a second look behind the obvious, the facade, and making places my own ranks equally to physically traveling. Combining these two roads, the roads of the earth and the roads of the mind, adventures proved to be mind-blowing. I am thankful that photography opens new perspectives for me and it will surely continue to do so in 2018.
Here are the 18 images that tell this story so much better than my words.
Field of Dreams
Once in a Lifetime
Under my Feet
It's a kind of Magic
Cape Floral Treasures
Spirit of Adventure
Fim do Mundo
I hope that you enjoyed my collection of photos from the last 18 months. The process of putting them together was a lot of fun for me. Contrary to my always present feelings of failing, I seemed to score not so badly. This gives me new energy for new horizons that are ahead in 2018. I am dreaming of a wild bunch of new adventures and projects. If only the half of it are happening in the end, it will be an amazing year!