Time again for my top ten images for the previous year. 2021. An interesting year I'm sure we'll all agree. The part of Sydney I live in was classed as an area of concern so for a part of the year I was confined to a 5km limit of home and only allowed out of the house for food, medical or exercise (limited to one hour a day). So no photograph trips out during that lockdown. So made for an interesting year photography-wise, no trips away all year. Even with the restrictions I still managed to come up with some decent shots, I'll leave it to you to see if I improved from the previous year's top ten, link to last year's top ten down below.
One thing that came out of the year is I started a major project with the Australian Botanic Gardens, The project will run for several years and probably for as long as I'm willing to participate in it. With this project, I get to work with some of the horticultural stuff in the gardens so a great learning for me on the various plants in the gardens, as a result, I've got a lot more flora shots for the year. So kicking off the year the first shot is a close-up of wattle, using the skills I've developed over the years with my fungi work I've transferred those skills to the flora work, so this one is using off-camera lighting.
The next shot is a wildlife shot of Red-rump Parrots coming to drink in the morning, this shot has the female coming in to try and get to the log currently occupied by a male, the tail of the female is dragging in the water. This shot is with natural light, so not lit with a Speedlite, it was a bit overcast but a bit of light was coming through in the right spot at the right time. Some days luck does play a part, but also if I'm there often enough then I improve my odds of getting a decent shot with great light. I usually spend one day a week shooting in the gardens so that certainly helps.
I managed to find some great Fungi to shoot this year and this was one. One of the bigger ones I've shot over the year and great colour on this one. As usual, these are shot in the Australian Botanic Gardens, the gardens are only open from 8:00 am till five and till seven in the three summer months so all are shot in normal daylight. Again happy with how the lighting came out on this one, two off-camera Speedlites used. I like the mood the lighting has created in this shot, Not every shot you manage to get it all the way you want, but this time, I'm happy with the results.
This shot comes from a few years of walking the gardens at all times of the day and times of the year and knowing where to be and when to catch the light. This one is again all natural light, so around 3:30pm to 4:00pm in the winter months the suns lower and before it goes down over the hill the eastern side of the connections gardens gets this amazing light a few years ago I got some great Flannel Flowers this time a Kingia in flower with the amazing backlight.
This next shot was a great find one day after recent rains, one of the bigger Mushrooms I'd find in the gardens. The colour of this one made it stand out and with two off-camera speedlites made it pop. The orange against the green foliage with the sharp focus on the mushroom cap texture against the brown soil makes the image have a sort of surreal feel to it. One of my better Mushroom shots todate.
This is an Australian King Parrot feeding in the Australian Botanic Gardens, Again love the sharpness of this one that the Canon R5 gives.
This one shows just what can be achieved when in lockdown and shooting in the backyard, Natural light. For this shot, it's all about the position of the camera relative to the subject to the back gound and where and how the light falls. The Subject the spotted dove was flying from the side fence to the ground. So the flight path is fairly predictable. The back of the yard is lined with decent sized bottle brush trees which cast a shadow on the back fence in the early morning, So the background is the back fence in shadow and the bird is flying through the sunlight. So natural light and position creates this shot.
Pretty much every year I've managed to get a Waratah shot into my top ten and this year is no exception. This one like all but one of my shots are taken in the Australian Botanic Gardens the exception being the shot above in my backyard. This one taken with two off-camera speedlites.
Loving the sharpness of the R5 with the 100-500mm. The colour between the white / cream bird and the green background is what makes this image for me. The bird being a Long-billed Corella feeding on wattle seeds in the gardens.
This ones the last one for the top ten, this ones right up there as one of my favourite mushroom shots so far, sometimes it all comes together the lighting and the post-processing. Most of the Fungi shots are taken with two speedlites, This one as well. The light on the left with a brown gel gives that warm light. Image is focus stacked as are most of them now. The processing gives the softening of the surroundings.
So that's my top ten for 2021, the last few years I've started to create these single pages of the top ten images. So I've got these records each year as a single page so I can easily compare how far I've come.
Whereas this is what Instagram likes think are my best images for the year. This is where I find it interesting as not one of the Instagram top nine images made my top ten. Not one of my fungi images made the top nine, whereas I had three in my personal top ten.
Below are the links to the last few years top ten blog posts for those that are new here.
The idea originally came from Martin Baily and his regular podcast which you can find the links from his site here,
Martin has been doing his top ten for my years than I have now, so always interesting to see how other people go about their work and what they come up with.
Stay safe out there everyone, have fun and happy shooting.
Thanks for dropping by my Blog this week.