My 17 Favorite Photos of 2017

It is really hard to narrow down all of the thousands of photos that I made in 2017 to just 17. The number is arbitrary because of the year. The good news is that with each year that passes I get to add another photo to my year end countdowns. This list is not a list of my best technical achievements. I would rather pick seventeen moments that I really liked from the year. Even doing that it is a hard list to put together.

17. Oh boy he is going to talk about his kids again! Of course this countdown starts with my little one. She is probably the person that is most photographed in my life. Here she has a great time trick or treating in downtown Lafayette. I love the smile and the sense of place of this photo. It is probably my favorite photo of her from last year.

16. On August 21st everyone turned their eyes to the sky. The sun would be eclipsed by the moon. With the sky looking cloudy in our area I made the quick decision to head north to where I saw clear skies. We found a country road that we could park on, and we watched the eclipse. Here my step daughter enjoys the moment. I could have set up gear and shot the actual eclipse, but this seemed more important to me at the time.

15. On our way home from Ocean City, Maryland this year my wife budgeted some time into our schedule to spend in Philadelphia near the Liberty Bell. If you know me then you know that I love American History. This is basically where American history started if you think about it. That is what I love about my wife. She knew I would love this, and she made sure that it happened.

14. The night before our Ocean City, Maryland trip I headed in the other direction to see Metallica play at Soldier Field. I love Metallica, and I had not seen them play live in quite some time. This was a great night listening to my favorite band. This photo also shows just how fluid these top 17 lists have been. This photo wasn’t even included in the Top 17 concert photos post, but it appears here. As I was making this post I realized how much I loved the colors. When viewed larger I think that it looks much better than it did in the thumbnail that I used to choose the concert posts.

13. This photo was made on the way to Indiana State. Here I saw a familiar barn that would allow me to create a starburst through. It was a no-brainer to pull off of the road to make this photo. When you can make colorful photos in the winter you do it.

12. Here is another photo made on the way to Indiana State. This was an early morning drive to cover one of the first football practices of the year. I left a little early on purpose so that I could make a sunrise photo somewhere along the way. I looked fruitlessly for a while. The mist in the air would have made for a good photo, but I couldn’t find anything interesting to put around it. Here I found a scene that looked okay, and then the deer showed up. It ran through the frame and made the photo. This is another photo that looks best larger. Click on the image to see it that way.  Continue reading “Top 17 Photos of 2017”


Re-Visiting the Final Resting Place Of Our 16th President

A month of so ago I went back to visit the final resting place of Abraham Lincoln. This was a site that I visited in 2007 with my first dSLR, and I always wanted to go back to photograph it again. The day that I was there in 2007 it was overcast, and not very photogenic. Of course as I was driving to the tomb again the skies started to cloud up. Maybe those overcast skies are a good thing though as they convey a mood fitting for the site.

On This Day in 1865

On this day in 1865 Abraham Lincoln was going through his final day on this planet. Little did he know that his decision to attend the play ‘Our American Cousin’ would be one that would end his life. His assassin was determined to accomplish his mission so who knows what would have happened had Lincoln decided to skip the play. Would Booth have found another opportunity to accomplish his goal? We all know now that Booth was able to kill Lincoln, and after a long train ride across the county he was laid to rest in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, Illinois. That is where the story gets interesting.

When is a Final Resting Place Not Always Final?

The body of Abraham Lincoln went through an interesting journey over the years. After his death the body took a long route from Washington to Springfield so that many people could morn the President. In 1879 the body was nearly stolen by a group wanted to ransom it for release of a friend. In 1901 the casket was once again opened just before it was placed in the above crypt. It was moved 17 times prior to finally finding its place in the photo above. It is covered with ten feet of cement and steel now so Mr. Lincoln should be able to finally rest in peace.

Greeted By Abraham Lincoln

On my way to St. Louis I went a little out of my way to stop by Abraham Lincoln’s Tomb in Springfield, Illinois. The tomb is located at the Oak Ridge Cemetery which also has some other interesting things to photograph. For this trip I had limited time so I just stuck to turning the tomb of the 16th President. When you pull up to the tomb you see a great monument to a great man. The first thing that you see when you walk inside of it is this view above. I knew that it would make for a great black and white image. The room was set up perfectly for a great high contrast black and white image. If the docents would have let me move the signs and other clutter this could have really been a great shot.

A Familiar Trip

In 2006 I made a trip to the Lincoln tomb with my old point and shoot camera. It was part of a fun day visiting the Lincoln sites, and then seeing a Purdue baseball doubleheader at Illinois that night. Of course the Big Ten does not play doubleheaders anymore which is great for the players, but as a fan I miss it. It made a single day road trip to see a team a little more worth your while.

The Week in Photos

Last week was a truly fun week. Tuesday night I had the chance to photograph the girls at their dance classes, and then head on over to see Purdue win the Big Ten conference in basketball. Of course the trip to St. Louis was a fun one as well. It was a fun week of making images yet again. This year I have decided to make something every day. The something I make may never see the light of day. That is part of the process though is to go for broke and try something that may not work. I have really grown as a person since I started taking my photography seriously a few years back. I have learned to shoot for me, and nobody else. Since I have started doing that I have really enjoyed what I do more, and I have had some cool opportunities as a photographer as well. You can see some of my favorite photographs from the past week here.