Noun: a group of 13; a dozen plus one: from the former practice among bakers and other tradespeople of giving 13 items to the dozen as a safeguard against penalties for short weights and measures.
Another year, another dozen (+1) and once again the very generous Jim Goldstein has given us room on his site to post our yearly favorites for his 2018 Your Best Photos Blog. I had no specific projects this year but we did do a lot of traveling, probably more than any of the previous years of displaying favorites. I did two long road trips out to the Arizona, New Mexico region, one in January with Katherine and the most recent one a long solo tour in December; in June a 15-day trip to France to cycle in the Loire Valley and some Paris sightseeing; April had us in Paso Robles for a few days (a location that always provides some photographic rewards); a September cycling trip in the Bend, Oregon region opened up some new vistas for me. Taking the scenic route to Bend, traveling north on Hwy 395 we stopped in Bodie State Park for the first time; and throughout the year, the usual trips within San Diego County. Two new and beautiful National Parks were checked off: Crater Lake and Great Sand Dunes, both worth a return trip. To top it all off a very special trip to Las Vegas to meet a very special someone.
These images are available for purchase thru my Fine Art America site, just click on the image and you'll be taken to the store.
So, here we go, starting in our local east county...
Santa Ysabel Open Space. A nice walk among the oaks with storms brewing in the distance.
2. Bodie Truck
My first visit to this venerable California Ghost Town/State Park. Much more there than I had expected with deteriorating buildings at every angle. No ghosts however.
3. Bodie Reflections
Another from the Bodie visit. Each window seemed to have a reflective story to tell of olden days and past lives.
4. Oak in Oak Arch
This is the second time this arching oak has made a yearly favorites list. I visit this old friend each time I'm in Paso Robles and twice now I've found the early morning light favorable.
Our January 4-T trip inspired by Little Feat's song Willin' (Tucson to Tucumcari; Tehachapi to Tonapah). Tucumcari was a cornucopia of compositions if you prefer decaying buildings, signs, and in some cases residents.
6. Wall and Tower
New Mexico has fantastic ruins from ancient pueblo times. Abó is a pueblo ruin that is preserved as part of the Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monuments.
7. Oak in Morning Light
Another from Paso Robles, CA. A cold and early morning jaunt into the backroads of central California's wine country brought me to this scene. Where, unfortunately, I broke the release button on my tripod's ball head. Lots of hand held shots from then on.
8. Hill and Cloud
Resulting image from a long and somewhat frustrating five state trip during the winter of 2018. I found this composition in Petrified Forest National Park.
9. Valet Parking
I loved this art display. Found in Goldfield, NV, one of those in-between places between two out-of-the-way places: Tonapah and Rhyolite, Nevada. The International Car Forest of the Last Church is an art display of a few dozen cars and busses sometimes placed nose down in the earth and full of colorful graffiti. Perfect fodder for a photographer, especially on stormy days like when we arrived.
10. Urban Umbrella
I love these quotidian scenes that one comes across but does not always capture the eye. Sixth Street in San Diego near Balboa Park, an umbrella hangs nonchalantly from a 1st floor balcony. The upper floors created a pattern of horizontal lines broken by the irregular shape of the umbrella. Perfect for monochrome.
11. Alone at Crater Lake
We didn't get much time in Oregon's Crater Lake National Park but did have the fortune to come across this single pine sitting precariously on an outcropping with nothing but the vast lake as a backdrop. Some trees get all the best views.
12. Sitters and Stairs
Cruising the River Seine on a tour of Paris brought us to this scene. I've seen these stairs in many a photograph and always found them compositionally enticing. With the mid-day sun striking the sitter at the bottom of the stairs I knew I had something to work with. Some dodging and burning brought out the best in the image. A favorite of this year's crop.
Last and certainly not least, my new granddaughter - Naomi Elyse Sandoval (she's the little one, sleeping). Her first day in the world and I'm certain we'll all be better for it.
Merry Christmas, Everyone! Here's wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year!