Tuesday, 22 December 2015

My favourite photos of 2015

It is once again that time of year when it seems appropriate (and I have some free time) to review the photos that I took this year, and show off some of my favourites. 

Starting about a year ago in late December, I took the following image on the Shubie Canal. I subsequently entered it into a photo contest with Outdoor Photography Canada (the subject was "water") and won third prize. Yay, me. 

Water pouring over a lock weir on the Shubie Canal.
Over the Christmas holidays of 2014, a group of us also treated ourselves to an abandoned mill.

Abandoned mill.
Starting in January, we then began to experience the winter from hell. Snow storms seemingly every Wednesday kept the snow banks piling up, and each one seemed to be followed by freezing rain and a flash freeze just to make things extra interesting. We still had snow on the ground in early May. Blech.

Probably not the only unclaimed bike in downtown Halifax last winter.
Sometimes, the snow could be quite picturesque.

Architecture photography of the architecture building at TUNS. Yes, I still call it that.
Speaking of architecture, the winter was a good time to be introduced to both the exterior....

Halifax Central Library
...and the interior of the new Halifax Central Library.

Halifax Central Library.
In April, a trip to Lawrencetown produced some photos of foamy surf. The weather was as cold as it looks in the photos.

Surf at Lawrencetown.
Waterfront Development was replacing portions of the boardwalk this spring, and the snow didn't let up for the work.

Boardwalk replacement work went slowly.
By the time May came, everyone was going a bit stir crazy. Apart from the snowly....err, slowly... appearing green, another sure sign of spring is the arrival of the herring fleet. For more photos, I wrote a whole blog post on my herring fleet photography earlier in the year. In the image below, I use a style of photography that a bunch of us named after one of our little photography group, namely the "Steve Angle", or "Stangle" for short. If you are ever taking a photography class, use the term "Stangle" and see if you can confuse the instructor.

The herring fleet brings some opportunities for abstract photography.
The vegetation eventually made a return as well.

Apple trees near the Dartmouth Common.
The first Sunday in May is Battle of the Atlantic Sunday, the day when we remember those who fought and lost their lives in that battle. This year, I rode along with HMCS HALIFAX for the committal ceremony off Point Pleasant Park, and I was able to take this image of the cadets of RCSCC Swiftsure lined up on the jetty with the ashes of the veterans to be committed. My lens was too long, but I managed to stitch two images together on the computer to make it work.

Cadets of RCSCC Swiftsure.
 The first days of summer brought some interesting fog with them.

George's Island with a fog bank immediately behind obscuring McNab's Island.
The Halifax-Dartmouth ferry frequently has to deal with fog as well.

Woodside I in the fog.
The launching of the small fleet at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is also a welcome sign that more appealing weather is approaching.

Whim is a restored Chester C at the NSMMA. I love the colour, which is reminiscent of the paint on the floorboards in my own boat.
The summer brings fireworks, which I often miss. I sometimes try to photograph the Canada Day fireworks in Bridgewater from the cottage, but this year they were a complete dud - they were all below the tree line. The smoke afterwards, though, made up for it slightly.

Remnants of Bridgewater's Canada Day fireworks.
Summertime brought the arrival of family from out west, and with them came a trip to Grand Pre, which I hadn't made in many years. 

Building at Grand Pre.
We also headed out to Peggy's Cove, where I took the opportunity to fire off a few shots on my grandfather's old film camera and some black & white film. I was particularly happy with how this image turned out.

I get bored taking the same old shots of the Peggy's Cove lighthouse.
I also had a chance this past summer to dabble in some astrophotography, in this case combining some lighting painting of my sailboat in front of the Milky Way.

This shot is the result of a 20 second exposure at ISO 8000 with a 32mm lens (on APS-C) at f/1.8.
All too soon, summer was over once again, and it was time to haul the boat. I dread this time of year, as much for the end of summer as for the amount of work required to put the boat away.

Hauled and covered.
Fall in Halifax brings Nocturne, the Art at Night festival. This year they had a ferris wheel on Citadel Hill, which was a big hit. This was my first year to attend, but I will definitely have to go back next year.

Nocturne's ferris wheel. I like the way the crosswalk in the foreground leads into the image, though I suspect most eyes will alight on the ferris wheel first.
An early morning walk to work and some lucky timing brought me to the NSMMA's CSS Acadia just as the flag was being hoisted over the stern.

CSS Acadia's flag flapping against the early morning sun.
It may be late fall, but you can still go to the beach. These sand ripples on Summerville Beach near Liverpool were partly filled with water from which the sun could reflect. Once upon a time I avoided shooting into the sun whenever possible, but now I seem to do it all the time. 

Sand ripples on Summerville Beach.
Not all of the province's beaches are sandy, and the rocky ones can be just as interesting, especially when you add some impressive clouds and orange kelp.

Beach at Western Head.
Finally, a shot taken just earlier this week, while riding the ferry on my way to work. A bank of cloud lined up perfectly, putting the Halifax Waterfront in partial shadow, while still allowing the light from the rising sun to illuminate the buildings. This is as good an example as any of why I always try to have a camera, even if only the one in my phone, with me at all times. I would have been rather upset to have missed this image.

Dawn versus Dusk.
Well, that is it for 2015. Between now and the new year, I will probably add one or two more posts to showcase my maritime and/or naval photography for 2015. 

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