Over the last few years I have spent the days between Christmas and New Year putting together a little retrospective view of the 12 months that preceded. 2014 was a slightly different year for photographically speaking, normally I would watch the most popular images on flickr change on a monthly and even weekly basis. In 2014 I captured a series of image in the first few weeks of January that retained their place in the top 3-4 photos of the year.
It comes as no surprised that these photos were captured in the Mournes and interestingly this area of outstanding beauty in Northern Ireland’s County Down dominates the review of 2014.
St John’s Point Lighthouse
St John’s Point Lighthouse at night manages to take the number one spot of 2014. Please note you can click an image to view it large on flickr and all statistics quoted are based on flickr popularity. I do have to say this isn’t my favourite photo of 2014 by any means and to be honest I am not sure why it retained its popularity over the full twelve month period.
Harland and Wolff – The Blackford Dolphin
Another nighttime image captured with the Fujifilm X-E2 camera was a photo of the stunning Blackford Dolphin that visited Belfast for an extensive refit. The oil rig lit up the docks area of the city to such a level it was referred to as the Belfast Christmas Tree.
This is the first photo I captured with my Fujifilm X-T1 camera, a little long exposure photograph of the Craigavon lakes. I also had a look at the wifi function offered on the latest Fujifilm cameras.
Silent Valley in the heart of the Mourn Mountains offers a remarkable view of the peaks and a long walk around to the dam-head. This image was captured using the long exposure photography technique using the Fujifilm X-T1 camera.
New Year’s Day
Starry Night : Mournes
This has to be my favourite photography of 2014. An October evening at around 9pm we drove into the Mournes. It was completely dark, completely silent and the heavens were a stunning view as our eyes adjusted to the light. This image was featured by flickr a few days later. The image was captured on the X-E2 and 14mm lens. You can see more photos from this visit to the Mournes here.
Rams’ Pocket Radio video shoot
In February I headed, yet again into the Mournes, this time to document the creation of a music video for Ram’s Pocket Radio. I packed my trusty Fujifilm X100s. It was a remarkable day, shortly after this image was captured the clouds descended making visibility almost impossible.
It is always worth reflecting on process and progress. I decided this year to look a little at reflections and consider how often they are right in front of us yet we don’t see them. This was the first in a series of reflection focused photographs.
James Lyttle : Mojo Fury
This portrait was captured with the Fujifilm X-T1 and the absolutely stunning Fujinon 56mm f/1.2 lens. I love this lens, it is the perfect lens for capturing people. James Lyttle is co-owner of Millbank studios and is a member of Mojo Fury one of the best alternative bands to herald from Northern Ireland. One of my favourite bands, Mojo Fury feature quite predominantly on the review of 2014.
Although primarily a portrait lens the 56mm produces breathtaking bokeh and I ended up treating it like a documentary lens when it first arrived. I love this lens, it is fast, sharp and it is perfect for shallow depth of field photography. You can read my review of the Fujifilm 56mm lens here.
Tyrella at Night
Another long exposure image of the Tyrella landscape. The glow of the town of Newcastle illuminating the base of the Mourne Mountains. This image was captured on the same weekend of the St John’s Point photo (first image).
Fujfilm 18-135mm Review
I was sent a pre-production version of the Fujifilm 18-135mm lens. Fujifilm’s first weather sealed lens is genuinely something very special. A massive focal length range makes it ideal for literally anything and the fact it is weather sealed means it is perfect out on winter hikes (or everyday shooting in Northern Ireland). The technology behind the zoom lens is remarkable you can read more about it in the review.
I captured this image at a Duke Special event in February. I had to deal with the worst deluge of red light I have ever seen at a gig. The result was the creation of a lightroom preset that attempts to neutralise the red light and replace the skin tones. You can download the free red light concert photography Lightroom preset here.
The Road to the Mournes
The road across Dundrum Bay in County Down, a popular spot for walkers offering breath-taking views of the surrounding coast line.
New Year’s Day Fog
Another image from the hike to the top of Donard on new year’s day. The 6am start meant we were able to watch the run rise on a new year over the Mourne skyline. You can read the full article on the Donard climb here. This image was captured with the X100S.
Sunset on Tyrella beach, early January 2014. Captured with the Fujifilm X-E2. This image was used by Discover NI for their Valentine’s Day promotion.
I had the opportunity to shoot some stills on a film directed by one of my former students. ‘Grace’ by Jack Walsh was shot at Castlewellan Castle on one of the wettest days in August. It was so wet even my waterproofs failed to hold out the water but it was great to see Jack putting his creative talent to work. You can read more about the film here : Grace a film by Jack Walsh.
Shot at Mojo Fury’s 1o year birthday it features front man Michael Mormecha. The image was converted on black and white in post production. You can read more here : Mojo Fury 10th Birthday.
Conker Collecting in Autumn
I do this shot every year. Conkers in focus, rich bokeh background and the application of my vintage autumn lightroom preset. Perhaps I should give this shot a miss in 2015.
Another image captured with the brilliant X100s camera. The compact size and small weight of the X100S means it is easy to take literally anywhere. This image was again captured on new year’s day and managed to spend twelve months in the top 100 list.
Donard Forest Reflections
Another look at the reflections found in puddles of water. On a still day you can use the surface as mirror. See photographing puddles.
The Dam head
The long walk from Silent Valley leads to the largest dam in Northern Ireland. Captured in February 2014 on a cold wet winter morning. It was a great walk and experiencing the winds at the top of the dam was really something else.
The Blue Lough Walk
There is a brilliant walk on the Annalong side of the Mournes to an area of water known as the ‘blue lough’ this image was captured as we embarked on our first visit to the lough. It was a great day weather wise and the views up to the lough were breath taking. You can read more about the blue lough here.
Another portrait shot using the Fujifilm 56mm lens. This image was converted to mono using Lightroom, it is such a brilliant lens for people photography.
I love this view of the city of Lisburn. I have shot it a few times but really wanted to capture it with the new Fujinon 18-135mm lens. Converted to mono in Lightroom. The view is from the R-Space gallery on Lisburn’s Castle Street.
Mojo Fury : Limelight
Another Mojo Fury image made the top 100 on flickr for 2014. This image was captured at their tenth birthday in the Limelight, Belfast. You can see more coverage of the 10th Birthday here.
Road through the Mournes
Alana Henderson performing with Rams’ Pocket Radio in the Strand Cinema, Belfast.
Harland and Wolff and Funderland
Another long exposure image capturing the lights of the the fair that illuminate the famous Harland and Wolff cranes.
The Duke of York, Belfast
A buzzing area of Belfast at night, at the heart of the Cathedral quarter likes the brilliant Duke of York. This is actually the quietest I have seen the lane but it was early on a Saturday evening.
Toshinobu from Japan created a quite remarkable installation in Lisburn’s R-Space Gallery. You can read more about Toshinobu Takamitus here.
I have no idea how this image managed to reach the top 100 on flickr, perhaps it is nature’s convergence but it managed to grab the attention of a number of fellow photographers.
Another climb to the top of Slieve Donard this time for a local charity. The wind brought waves of cloud, from nil to perfect visibility in minutes. The trusty X100S documented the journey and the views from the top were breathtaking. A much more leisurely pace it was quite a day out.
Guitar legend Orianthi also made the top 100 images. Captured in Belfast’s Ulster Hall Orianthi was performing with the rock legend Richie Sambora. Orianthi and Richie enjoyed their stay in Belfast and even embarked on a tour of the different Belfast musical instrument outlets.
Another 18-135mm image with the pre-production lens this image is from a bridge across the Lagan river in the Belfast.
Bass player in Mojo Fury this is another image from the series of monos on Tyrella beach. This image was again captured with the X-T1 and 56mm lens. It is great to see the Mojo Fury images reach the top 100 given they were only captured at the end of October.
Another photograph for Fujifilm and the release of the 18-135mm lens. I love the highs and lows of the light and how well the lens and X-T1 captured the texture and range.
The annual trip to Donegal wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Poison Glenn. This is an image of the famous Dunlewey Church.
Kyle John Suckling
My good friend Kyle John Suckling performing around the fire during an Easter get-together. This image was captured with the 56mm.
Jump – Tyrella
Another Tyrella beach image, it is hard not to capture a great image in the golden hour on this beach.
Mojo Fury on Tyrella
One of my favourite visits to Tyrella. An autumn evening as the sun began to fall behind the Mourne mountains. Captured on the X100S the sense of space of freedom was amazing. This image is quite a contrast from the day before capturing Mojo Fury. Read More : Tyrella Beach.
Another image was my venture out with a pre-production Fujinon 18-135mm. A perfect documentary lens it performed in a wide range of situations and environments.
Morning in Donard Forest
I normally post the most popular posts based on average views per month. Due to a bit of a glitch I only have data for November and December.
- I love Free Lightroom Presets
- The Fujifilm X100T Review
- 65 Photos taken with the X100 Series
- 10 Reasons to own a Fujifilm X
- The Fujifilm 18-135mm Review
- The X100s and the Lee Seven5 System
- The Fujifilm X100s One Year On
- The Long Exposure eBook
- Shooting Shallow eBook
- Harland and Wolff at Night
2015 will see a very different approach to photography, I will not only be trying out a few new processes but I will also be working with some local artists to make the 2015 very different. I am looking forward to starting the year with my favourite camera the Fujifilm X100T (see the Fujifilm X100T Review here). 2015 will be about colour, the black and white images will still appear but there will be a much reduced offering with the aim of increasing the amount of colour on the site.
2015 is bound to see some new Fujifilm technology and offerings, is there anything you want to see coming this year?
FlixelPix Photography eBooks
FlixelPix has written a number of educational photographic eBooks covering ‘Understanding depth of field‘ and ‘long exposure photography‘. If you would like to develop your photographic skills in 2014 why not check the FlixelPix Photographic ebook Bundle. Click here for more information.