It’s that inevitable time of year again when there’s a moment to breathe, take in the year and reflect on some of best photography from 2015. This particular list is drawn from my Flickr favourites and just because your photography doesn’t feature here, doesn’t really mean anything, these are just 20 images that particularly caught my eye this year on Flickr – the rest of them can be seen BY CLICKING HERE.
In no particular order, but certainly one of my favourites of the year is this one from Darren Ciolli-Leach. I think Darren and I often seem to share a similar mindset on things and I know he goes through spells where his inspiration and confidence evaporates a little but to my eye he has little to worry about because photography like this is in my view as good as it gets for woodland. A wonderful use of light.
Next up is the world class imagery of Antony Spencer. I’m at a loss for words in admiration for photography like this, it’s certainly the sort of photograph that I still live to take and I don’t think it would look out of place on the cover of National Geographic. A truly stunning eye that goes from strength to strength for me.
Another firm favourite of mine this year was Vertigo from Greg Whitton. Probably should have won the Living The View category in Landscape Photographer Of The Year, but we’re not going to discuss that any further. Photography like this is a class apart to my eye and Greg’s passion for the mountains will continue to put him in a position to produce much more of this level of quality going forward:
One of my many highlights of the year was visiting Masters Of Vision 2015 and this photograph from David Baker looked absolutely stunning framed up on the wall. The magical mix of gold and blue absolutely making this one…
Everyone knows I’m drawn to a misty tree or two, but James has produced a consistently stunning set from Bolehill Wood in the Peak District. I’ve never got what I’ve wanted from there to date so James continues to set the pace for me, truly lovely stuff.
It’s been another extraordinary year for Valda and this recent one just shows why. Photography on another dimension of creativity no question, the fact that she can do this with Infrared after using it for five minutes just demonstrates her mindset and vision. In truth this is probably not my absolute favourite of hers for the year, she produced some staggeringly beautiful frames for Masters Of Vision 2015 but you need to visit her website to take a closer look. Regardless, I still absolutely adore this one:
It was absolutely no surprise to me that Andy Farrer was crowned Landscape Photographer Of The Year in 2015. He’s an absolutely top bloke but like the best in the game, he’s such a hard worker. Although the photograph below is not his LPOTY winner, he’s another master of the woods and one of my key inspirations. Andy absolutely brings out the beauty of the Dorset countryside and surrounding counties, really beautiful stuff…
It’s mono time now and one of the lesser known photographers out there, Michael Marsh a fabulous photographer from Kent. I could have filled the twenty images I’ve picked here just with his work but settled on this super atmospheric image of a cat. As followers of my photography know I’ve taken a few animal shots this year again and I retain an interest in trying to produce artistic imagery like this.
I can’t actually think of a competition that Lee hasn’t either featured in or won outright. It’s not accidental. He is another who’s blessed with the photographer’s eye, someone who naturally sees composition, competing elements, tone and light. This isn’t something you can train in my view, sure you can work at things and improve with thousands of hours of effort but some people are just born with the eye, and I’m pretty sure Lee is one of them.
Colin’s photography requires no introduction to my mind, his series from the Lake District is something I could never get bored of, an ethereal quality which delivers on the soul of these great locations. If you want to get lost in some of the classiest landscape photography the UK has to offer then your time would be well served taking a slow wander through his website…
You can’t talk about the Lake District without mentioning the other master of Cumbrian landscapes, Mark Littlejohn. Another long-time inspiration for me, Mark’s work took on new purpose after he won Landscape Photographer Of The Year in 2014 and he continues to show why that mantle wasn’t a fluke in some way. Just staggering stuff all year but I’m a sucker for a top mono and photography like Sunshine And Showers just oozes that Lake District atmosphere in buckets
There have been plenty of photographers who travelled to Iceland to shoot the world famous Jökulsárlón lagoon, but Steve really did grab a magnificent set from there. There’s something incredibly natural about this frame that I like, it’s not over-polarised and the colours work beautifully as a result. As is usually the case, subtlety wins here but it’s another of those magnetic ‘gold and blue’ photographs I love so much.
I’m sorry but it’s impossible to complete a review of inspirational images without mentioning Chris Friel. His photography may not be to everyone’s liking but there really are very few others who have persistently ploughed their own furrow as much as Chris has. No doubt he draws influences from elsewhere as I think everyone does, but there is definitely something unique in Chris’s foundation and application that continues to set his work completely apart. All I know is I can’t stop looking.
Another of the high quality Norfolk contingent is Matthew Dartford who is surely going to make a massive name for himself sooner or later. He’s what I class as a more contemporary landscape photographer, he definitely doesn’t see things the way that others do and his low light work in particular is absolutely staggering. He just continues to turn out more beauties like this, but this particular photograph is certainly one of my firm favourites of the year:
Brian Kerr might not be known for his animal photography but I absolutely love this photograph of a lone cow. Actually much of Brian’s landscape photography is absolutely top draw and his work is another set I take great delight in viewing through the year. I’m not even sure this was meant to be a serious image or not but regardless I think it’s a fabulous animal study – the light across the cow’s back is just wonderful.
For a long time now, Doug has been someone who has certainly preached a more creative approach to landscape, words which are also delivered through his images. I’m not sure I ever really got to grips with Intentional Camera Movement but looking at images like this make me want to give it a go again. The great thing about Doug’s photography is his total diversity though, everything from the city, to still life, to the land, a photographer who can definitely turn his hand to almost anything…
Justin has regularly pulled off images of well known locations in the East of England that are just stuffed with atmosphere. His landscape and seascape work is of an extremely high standard and I’ve regularly enjoyed his infrared take on things – I’m pretty sure this particular photograph of Dovercourt isn’t an infrared but I love the foreground textures here regardless. Mono is definitely a big strength which Justin has in his locker.
Verity produces work of the highest order time and time again and her travels have certainly put her into some of the most stunning locations which she’s taken full advantage of. Atmospheric imagery like this sets an extremely high bar for others, I could have picked any number of photographs from her work this year…
Inevitably I follow a few photographers who share my keen interest in infrared and Matt is another who regularly pulls off what I would regard as more unusual imagery. This wonderful infrared shot of some simple river weed definitely reflects something of my own vision, it has a wonderful mystery and depth to it as well as all of those lovely fine details and shape. Not surprisingly this was picked out for some success in LPOTY in 2015, it’s at least one thing Mr Waite and I saw eye to eye on this year.
Last and by very no means least comes the photography of Finn Hopson in this year’s lineup. His views of the South Downs, apart from being perpetually on show in his top gallery in Brighton, adorn many of my Flickr favourites in 2015. Atmosphere, pattern, line, light, detail, take your pick – I personally never tire of seeing Finn’s great work, testament of that fact is the rather large frame I have of one of his tree images on my wall at home. Always a pleasure Finn…
So there we are, my picks for 2015. Hopefully you enjoyed the selection – I’m certainly looking forward to what 2016 has in store and I’m sure on a personal level I’ll be returning to take some more landscapes again soon. Eventually anyway! In the meantime, have a great Christmas.