Tuesday, December 27, 2011

10 Best Photos of 2011 by Scott Thompson

It's that time of year again, where I look back and review the best images I shot over the last 365 days. 2011 was a great year for my photography business. I kept very busy shooting for clients, exhibiting in art galleries, and I added a ton of photos to the virtual galleries on my website. 

Last year I posted my best photos of 2010 and it was a very popular post. So, here are what I feel to be my ten best photos of 2011:

1)  This is a classic view of Donner Lake in the town of Truckee, California where I live. The alpenglow was incredible that evening, it was also incredibly cold shooting it:

"Alpenglow at Donner Lake 2" - This alpenglow was photographed above Donner Lake and Truckee, CA.

2)  I sell out of a gallery in Reno called the River Gallery. Every third Saturday of the month they participate in the downtown Wine Walk and I can usually be found at the gallery helping out.  Sometimes after the event I'll take a walk with my camera and have some fun:

"Downtown Reno 4" - This Reno, The Biggest Little City in the World sign was photographed in Reno, Nevada at sunset. The effect was obtained in camera by long exposure mixed with intentional camera movement.

3)  For a little while in 2011, I exhibited at a gallery in Marin, CA. I traveled there a few times for gallery events and I got this photo during one of the trips of a bridge I have fond childhood memories of.  Here's a previous blog post about the shoot - Golden Gate Bridge photos

"Golden Gate Bridge Sunrise 1" - Photograph of San Francisco's famous Golden Gate Bridge at sunrise. San Francisco can be seen in the distance.

4)  I had been out fishing all day with no real photos to speak of. But on my drive home, I pulled over and got lucky with this soft sunset on Lake Tahoe. My boot got soaked while I was lying down to shoot it but it was so worth it:

"Lake Tahoe Pebbles" - These pebbles were photographed at sunset just north of Idlewild, Lake Tahoe, CA.

5)  Captain Pete invited me onto his fishing boat many times this year and I got many great photos from the boat. But this one of the sunrise and a fishing pole is my favorite from the boat: 

"Sunrise Fishing on Lake Tahoe 2" - This trolling fishing pole was photographed at sunrise on Lake Tahoe.

6)  Everyone that sees this photo thinks it's the famous Bonsai Rock, but it's not. I found this little bonsai like tree on a boulder near Speedboat Beach. I actually got tons of great photos from my kayak in the area, here's more about Speedboat Beach on a previous blog post -  Speedboat Beach Boulders Photography

"Tahoe Boulders at Sunrise 13" - These boulders and bonsai like pine tree were photographed at sunrise near Speedboat Beach, Lake Tahoe. Photographed from a kayak.

7)  I got to experience a first this year and photographed from a hot air balloon for the organizers of the Great Reno Balloon Race. It was incredible! Here is a fun tilt shift photo I got that makes the Reno homes and the balloon look like toys. More info about this shoot can be found on this previous blog post - 2011 Great Reno Balloon Race photos

"Balloon Over Reno 2" - This hot air balloon was photographed over Reno, Nevada during the 2011 Great Reno Balloon Race. The "toy" like effect was achieved using a tilt-shift lens.

8)  And again, I got to experience another first in 2011. This time, I got to shoot from a tiny experimental class seaplane with the door removed.  A happy client decided to bonus me by flying me over Truckee and Tahoe for some photography fun. Fannette Island in Emerald Bay has been shot thousands and thousands of times but rarely do you get to see it from this angle. More about this incredible adventure can be found on this previous blog post: Lake Tahoe and Truckee Aerial Photography

"Fannette Island, Lake Tahoe Aerial" - Photograph of Fannette Island in Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe. Shot from an amphibious seaplane with the door removed. The "Tea House" can be easily seen in the photo.

9)  In 2010, I got a photo of the eclipse that happened on the winter solstice. It was incredibly popular and went viral. This year, I got a photo of the December lunar eclipse over Downtown Truckee, CA.  It didn't go as viral but I actually liked the image a lot better:

"Lunar Eclipse over Downtown Truckee, CA. 2" - Photograph of the December 10th, 2011 lunar eclipse over Downtown Truckee, California.

10)  This photo is part of an ongoing abstract series titled "Beauty at the Bottom". The series consists of photos of bottles, shot right down the mouths of the bottles. I added many new photos to the series in 2011 but this one is my favorite new one of a Partida tequila bottle. More about how this series was created can be found on this previous blog post - Beauty at the Bottom photos

"Beauty at the Bottom: Tequila Sunrise 6" - This is a photograph of a tequila bottle, shot right down inside the mouth of the bottle.

Well, there you have it, my best photos of 2011.  I hope you enjoyed them and I hope you stay connected so you can see what I'm up to in 2012.  Please look for me on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Google+.  Happy New Year!!!

-Scott Thompson

The photos above are available as fine art prints, gift items, and to license and download as stock photography. Please click on an image for a larger view and purchasing options.