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A Year In The Life (Favorites from 2017)

So it’s that time of year to look back and reflect on all that has happened over the last 365 days. This year has been filled with a lot of ups and some serious downs. As some of you know, at the end of 2016, December 5th to be exact, I fell 22ft ending up in a Memphis hospital for 17 days. I was rushed to the E.R where skull and double knee surgery were required in which 50 staples were put into my head and my knee’s were locked straight for over a month. To this day, I’m still not fully recovered. The doctors estimated up to 2 years recovery time. Besides being thankful (of course) for still having cognitive abilities and being able to walk, climb, ride my bike and make photos, this year didn’t really start off to my liking. As the days went on things got better and as I sit here writing this, looking back on 2017, crazy as it sounds, I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

A side effect of the accident was that I had the opportunity to go on a few different trips that I wouldn’t have been able to do without having that time away from work, or the support of a lot of amazing people. Without these trips, I most likely wouldn’t even be creating this blog because I wouldn’t have enough photos to make it worth doing. I didn’t really make too many photos here in Denver this year for a variety of reasons.

In what follows are my favorite photographs from 2017. They may not be considered “bangers” to the Instagram world and for me that’s totally fine. I don’t make photos for likes, and I don’t make them with a need to wow an audience. I make them because I feel compelled to do so for one reason or another. A side effect of creating is that I can share online to people that are interested in looking, or to the few that choose to invest time and actually follow along. To make this more interesting, I’m going to include a short write up behind each one and why I chose to include it as one of my favorites for 2017.

These are in no specific order.

This is a portrait made of my girlfriend Samantha at the Naples Pier during sunset. She took me on a trip for my 30th birthday last April. We got to spend a couple days in Chicago, before flying out to Fort Myers Florida. I love this girl with all my heart.

This is a very special photograph to me. It was made to pay homage to my late friend Eric Janssen. Looking through his feed after his passing, I stumbled upon a photo of his and I don't know how it slipped past me.. I was so in love with his photo from this same isle, I knew I had to put my own take on it when I went to Memphis for his funeral.

This photo also represents to me the evolution of my photography since starting 5 years ago. I put everything I've learned into this photograph from the actual shoot, to the multiple attempts at it's post work. The composing, the focus, the levels, the settings, and the multiple images required to make this were 3 to be exact. The final product could not be done simply with one image. For the post work, that took several hours and multiple attempts.

Made somewhere at a DIY campsite in Moab Utah. Brandon @b.tormanen (left) is someone I've known since kindergarten and is a talented and inspiring photographer and friend. Always a good time to be in his company. David @_trauma (right) is also a talented photographer and inspiring friend I more recently met since moving to Denver. This was a great night under the stars with friends in a magical place.

The idea behind this photo was to juxtapose beauty and decay. I just think it's a very beautiful image that makes me feel some kind of way. I would really like to make a return trip to Detroit.

Also, made in Detroit. This time at an abandoned church. I am so in love with this photograph. It's one of those that makes you wonder what the hell you were thinking during your creative process to arrive at the final product. I remember rearranging the papers on the ground in this way, and I remember being so intrigued by the world "help" that was written next to the confessional.

During post, I removed all the other graffiti from the image in hopes the message that I wanted to convey would not be convoluted.

A portrait of my homie Nikolas Jones at Baker Beach in SF. I don't do many portraits but I really need to start making more of them of my friends and loved ones. As I learned this year, you aren't always promised to see them again. Also SF is one of my favorite cities and anytime I'm there it's guaranteed to be for