Best of 2017 - Everything Else

 It's a tricky thing to go through 30 thousand non-wedding photos that I kept this year, and even trickier to narrow it down.  In the end though, I picked ones that brought back a twang when I passed over them - ones that had a story or a feeling.  Each of these quick glimpses, brings back a much longer story, or a much longer setup.  Some of these had no build-up, and some had hours of preparation, but the common thread is that the ability to recognize moments has been a labor of love, and that labor is not nearly complete.  
  At the end of each year, I try to decide where to go next.  I look at photos from the year previous and try to find trends that I like, and trends that I don't like.  One thing I think I've seen from 2017's photos is that they feel quieter to me.  It may be a reaction to the uncertain noise in the national scene.  It may be a maturing, but even if you are mature, there are times to be quiet and there are times to be heard.  I hope to be given the wisdom to know the difference at the time that it is needed.
 This year started with a project called "The Listening Project".  I met with and made new friends, and honestly tried to put the photography in the back seat in place of conversation.  For someone who likes to talk, and also likes to photograph, it was both a simple project and a hard one, but it did teach me that I haven't been great at listening to people that I photograph.  I focused on that more this year, and will continue to work on refining it.  I think 2018 will be a year of listening too, but instead of just clients, I want to also listen to other creatives.  I've always wanted to learn from old masters, and I've read their books and wished more were around, but there are always newcomers, and while their ideas haven't been refined over years of practice, they are able to bring fresh raw thoughts that haven't been beaten down.  This year that I want to be able to recognize that, and listen to people who approach the process differently than I do. 
  We live in a hurry.  We consume in a hurry and with that can lead to a skimming of things that go much deeper.  I won't claim that all these photos are deep, or mean more than they appear to, but many do.  If you have the time, feel free to hang out a bit. Meander (I like that word), and as always, thanks for being the other half in my artistic collaboration.