One of my annual traditions around these parts is to post a nice recap of the year in photos. They range from road trips with friends, family pics, wedding, photoshoots and of course, storm images. It felt like a different year overall, a little more subdued, with spring chasing offering slightly less excitement this time around and a couple less weddings. But wow it was a blast of a year regardless!
The year kicked off at a little shoot with a former bride and groom from Australia and their new baby girl, and then I was off on a road trip with Jay, Jason and Andrew to Death Valley and the eastern Sierras. From there it was wedding season, then storm chasing on the plains, followed by epic haboob and lightning action across Arizona during the monsoon, and finally fall weddings and family portraits. Toss in some wonderful family moments, it was a year to remember.
It also marked my fourth year as a full-time photographer and it keeps getting better and better. I still feel incredibly blessed that I get to do this everyday.
Hope you enjoy this look back at some of my favorite images, including at least a photo from almost every wedding and family session!
Just over a month ago I did a photoshoot for the Shell family. I know Emma and Brian from their wedding years ago and then a couple of family shoots since then. Very special people to me, such a beautiful family.
The purpose of the shoot was to get the entire family together to capture some memories, especially with Heather, who had gotten real sick and was going through chemo. At the time of the shoot they had gotten some bad news that the cancer had spread more than they had thought it would.
I am just so devastated to hear that Heather passed away peacefully with her family yesterday. To meet someone so beautiful, so happy and funny, and to watch her enjoy being with her family, her niece and nephew…and then a month later to be gone. I have no words for this. Shoots like this remind me of how important photography can be to people who lose loved ones. I’m honored to have been able to be with the Shell family for a bit and capture some moments.
If anyone has anything extra, they are trying to raise money to help pay for her medical costs. Give it a thought if you have a moment.
This past year took me all over. A road trip to Utah and Colorado for our annual Lost//Discovered adventure. Weddings in Montana, Buffalo and Las Vegas. Engagement sessions in California, Sedona, Tucson, the Mogollon Rim, Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend. Storm chasing in the spring across nine different states while driving 25,000+ miles. Seeing a dozen or so tornadoes, including the first time capturing one in 8K. Then chasing storms and haboobs all over Arizona this summer with a couple film crews.
I also won an Emmy in October, which I need to write about at some point on this blog. I photographed 31 weddings, 41 family/engagement sessions, ran a tornado tour and a monsoon workshop. I put about 50,000 new miles on the 4Runner.
There is no way around it: 2016 was everything I hoped it would be. Thrilling, exciting, daunting, fulfilling and yes, completely exhausting. The end of the year has been great for me to take a break, reflect and refresh. Going over these images has been therapeutic. When you see your entire year laid out like it is below…well for me, it’s emotional. You see all the work you did, the smiles, the laughs, the love, the tough times, the storms, my kids, the moments and the celebrations.
Hope you enjoy this look back! This was hard to narrow down and painful to leave things out. But I tried to keep it “tight” as much as possible haha. It begins on New Year’s Eve just a 1/4 from my house at a blast of a wedding and ends with a treasured photo of my three kids with our amazing nanny Emma who will soon be leaving us for school full-time.
I included the three films I made as well!
I never know how to cut down on photos for a blog post…my wife does. If I let her at this thing, it would probably be half the size! As it is, I took out a ton of photos I love and kept it under 200. I feel good about that.
This was 2015. These are the photos I love the most and what made up my year. I used to try and include shots from every single shoot or wedding I did, but I’m unable to do that now as things have gotten busier and more widespread. But from personal work with my own family, to weddings, to portraits, to road trips and of course the storms, this spans the entire year.
All photos are shown in the order taken as well.
The year began with a big snowstorm that even produced flurries in Phoenix on December 31st, so we went out to enjoy it on New Year’s Day. From there it was engagement sessions, a road trip with my buddies, weddings, spring storm chasing, more weddings, the summer monsoon and ends on a volcano in Nicaragua!
So many amazing things happened this past year, but the biggest of all was it being my first as a full-time photographer. I quit my job a year ago in November and haven’t looked back. Best decision I’ve ever made and am so proud of that accomplishment.
Hope you enjoy this look back!