Brian's Photo Blog — Article 216
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2012: What a Photographic Year It's Been!
Monday 31 December 2012   —   Category: Thoughts
For my last blog entry of the year, I thought it would be fun to take a few moments to look back on some of my major photographic highlights and accomplishments during the past twelve months.

Image-wise, it was a fairly productive year: I took nearly 9,000 photos, 1,742 of which are presented in 61 different albums on this Web site — ranging from the Cape Perpetua 2012 album at the beginning of the year to Patjens Lakes 2012 at the end. That’s 33 percent more photo albums in 2012 than in all the previous six years combined!

Some of my photos even achieved a measure of success in various competitions throughout the year. At the local camera club I've been participating in, I won 44 awards in the monthly competitions, including 18 First Place, 13 Second, 10 Third, 2 Fourth and 1 Fifth! At the end of the club year in June, I was showered with numerous year-end awards, including:
  • Photographer of the Year in the “Monochrome Print - Open Subject” category
  • Photographer of the Year in the “Monochrome Print - Theme Subject” category
  • Photographer of the Year in the “Color Print - Theme Subject” category
  • Photographer of the Year in the “Color Print - Open Subject” category
  • Photographer of the Year - Second Runner Up in the “Electronic Image Display” category
  • Monochrome Print of the Year for the image The Next Step

One of these pictures also won an Award of Merit in a 4Cs regional photographic monthly contest (Painted Hills panorama above). Last but not least, I won 2 First Place, 1 Second and 2 Third in a community photo contest sponsored by the Albany Visitors Association. You can see all of my prize photos in the *AWARD WINNERS* album.

In order to find lovely places to take all of these photos, I traveled to quite a few destinations both near and far, including three longer journeys:
This year also saw some major changes in the inventory of my photographic equipment. At the beginning of the year I bought myself a Canon S100 high-end pocket camera, which I carry with me everywhere I go. A number of photo albums feature images from this camera, including Aerial Oregon & California 2012 and Neighborhood 2012. Later in the year I bought my wife a Sony DSC-HX20V pocket super-zoom camera — you can see the sample photos I took with it in the Sony HX20 Test 2012 album. I also added some lenses to my APS-C camera lens kit — but then at mid-year, EVERYTHING changed!

After a photographic hike at the end of June, I unexpectedly found myself mired in a Great Camera Quandary. The sad reality was that all of my APS-C camera equipment was just too heavy for me to carry around hiking. Eventually, after considerable pondering, I took my first step into a brand-new (Four Thirds) world. I bought the recently-released, hot-selling Olympus OM-D E-M5 camera and put together a completely new Micro Four Thirds lens kit. I've been SO VERY happy with this smaller and lighter equipment that I could never imagine going back to a larger APS-C or full-frame DSLR!

The astonishing end to this story is that I GAVE AWAY my entire APS-C camera system — worth about $11,000 new, and around $8,000 used. At first I was going to try to sell it all, but I kept having a nagging feeling that this wasn’t the right approach. Giving the equipment away really felt like a “God thing,” and I had a lot of joy and excitement in my heart about it. Perhaps that is yet another confirmation of the truth of this Biblical verse — “You should remember the words of Yeshua (Jesus) the Master: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive'” (Acts 20:35b).

All of what I have shared above (and more!) was recounted throughout 2012 in 175 blog articles (including this one) — that’s just about one article every other day, and more than four times as many as I wrote in 2011!

Circumstances evolve over time, and nothing remains the same, so I’m sure 2013 will be quite different from 2012, just as 2012 was quite different from 2011. Back in 2010 this Web site didn’t even exist, and I didn’t even own an interchangeable lens camera! My recent article — Fed Up With Photography! — might give you a foretaste of what’s in store for the new year.

Thanks for coming with me on this whirlwind journey through 2012. Whew, what a photographic year it’s been!
Brian's Photo Blog — Article 216
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