Written by 3:57 pm FlixelPix Blog

A Photographic Review of 2013

FlixelPix Top Photos, The Mournes

2013 was a busy year with some remarkable photographic opportunities and experiences. It is around this time of year I normally use Suprsetr to inform me of my top 50 photos of the year.

The result is a photographic narrative that goes someway to document the highlights of the last twelve months. Please note that most of the photos are from my flickr photos stream so click on any image to view large. The first image has to be from the Avalon Guitar Series with Ernie demonstrating the carving of the braces, the most popular photo of 2013 thanks to the 500px coverage.

Ernie McMillen Avalon GuitarsFujifilm X100s and X20 range of cameras. I was tasked to capture photographs of Northern Ireland with two very early and very pre-production cameras.

Captured with the Fujifilm X20

It was a brilliant experience and it was clear, even with at the early pre-production stage that the X100s was going to be a camera that I would never set down and literally take everywhere.

The Dark Hedges X100s

In 2013 I drew the ‘Mini Adventure’, aseries of macro photos featuring a little toy mini to a close. The project was simple, to attempt to use scale and depth-of-field to create the illusion that these little toys were actually full-scale cars. I used the Fujifilm X-E1 for this project, which developed into using a little remote shutter system to control the camera.

A Mini Winter

Long Exposure Photography

The exploration in Long Exposure Photography continued with a venture into the Belfast night sky as well as using the Fujifilm X-E1 to create a series of long exposure photos as part of a time-lapse creation.

Titanic Studios and Harland & Wolff

I am not fully confident with creating time-lapse films as yet so I suspect it is something that I will revisit in 2014 with the aid of ioShutter app.


2013 also saw the move from screw on filters to the brilliant Lee Filter Seven5 system. You can read about my experiences here. It is a great system and although initially looks expensive I am finding I am able to add support for each lens for around £25 per adaptor. This is considerably more affordable than a set of filters for each screw size.

The Worst Winter : Snow

For me there were definitely a number of highlights. There was the worst snow in decades and we made the slightly daunting journey to the Mourne Mountains but it was definitely worth it.

Silent Valley


A trip across the border to Donegal at the tail end of Easter was still a cold affair. It is a remarkable part of the world and the road to Bad Eddie took us past the rather scary Dunlewey Church.

Bunbeg Beach with the X100s

The Best Summer : Sun

In contrast, following one of the worst winters in living memory the summer was the complete opposite being one of the best in a number of years. Weeks of sunshine allowed Northern Ireland to show itself at its very best. A week on the North coast meant visits to Castlerock beach, Dunservick and Fair Head.

The White Rocks

Music & The Big If

Summer also saw a series of music events the largest being The Big IF to coincide with the G8 Conference. It was a great back stage experience and I had the opportunity to meet and photograph people like Two Door Cinema Club and Jim Broadbent.

Mojo Fury

The music adventure also continued with the opportunity to photography two guitar legends. It was a privilege to cover the Viv Campbell gig in Belfast as part of his Last in Line tour and Steve Vai blew the audience away in Belfast’s Mandela Hall as did the brilliant Mojo Fury.

Avalon Guitars

Keeping the musical theme going in August I put together a photo documentary of how Avalon guitars create their world renowned instruments. It was a remarkable experience to document the creation of a guitar from timber to instrument.

The Masters of Avalon

Freedom Through Photography

In September I had the opportunity to visit the Lake District with Millican Bags and Fujifilm for a packed weekend of photography. I shared the adventure with brilliant Derek Clark, Andrew James and Angela Nicholson and despite the early start it was one of the best photographic experiences this year, there was as much fun as there was photography.

The Tree

It was a truly fantastic experience, busy yet ultimately relaxing. Check out the ‘Freedom Through Photography’ post or watch the resultant video of my experience in one of the most stunning landscapes I have seen using one of the best camera bags on the market.

Shooting Shallow

The latter end of 2013 saw the release of ‘Shooting Shallow’ an ebook dedicated to the understanding of depth of field. The book was written in July but the pace of life meant it didn’t make to release until December.

Shooting Shallow eBook

The book looks at depth of field as one of the most important aspects of photography. Find out more: Understanding Depth of Field.

The Top 10 Posts of 2013

1. The Long Exposure eBook
2. The X100s : The Story so Far
3. I love Free Lightroom Presets
4. Avalon Guitars Story
5. To Mourne the Snow
6. Back Stage at Belfast IF
7. The X20 Hands On.
8. The X100s and Lee Filter System
9. Freedom Through Photography
10. The Mini Adventure

Top 30 Photos of 2013

I have slightly edited this list of the top thirty photos of 2013 to remove any duplicates of a subject. I am using SuprSetr to create a set of the top 100 photos and am editing these down based on the stats and personal preference down to the top 30 images.

1. Ernie leads the pack at number 1 as part of the Avalon Guitars Series:

The Guitar Maker

2. The Snow Covered Mournes

Towards the Mournes

3. Jim Broadbent at Big IF

Jim Broadbent

4. The Duke of York

The Duke of York

5. Hillsborough Storm Clouds

Hillsborough Storm Clouds

6. The Circuit 21 Shoot

X100s Film Set Sample

7. Time Lapse Tree

Time Lapse Play II

8. Bad Eddie

The Tide Arrives

9. Following the Tracks

Following Tracks

10. Belfast Riots

While Belfast riots the Duke of York rests.

11. Titanic Studios

Titanic Studios and Harland & Wolff

12. Peace


13. The X100s

The X100s Goodness

14. The Night Sky

Night Sky Test

15. The Belfast Market

Zebra Burgers?

16. Dunlewey Church
Dunlewey Church

17. The Conversation

A conversation I can't face

18. Belfast

Belfast at Night

19. Holywood County Down

Holywood County Down

20. St John’s Point

St John's Point with Fujifilm X-E2

21. St George’s Market

St George's Market, Belfast

22. The Climber

The Climber

23. Dusk

Dusk in County Down.

24. Lawson’s Jetty

Lawson Jetty

25. The Window

Video Frame

26. Viv Campbell

Viv Campbell

27. Equinox

Autumn Equinox

28. The Fine Detail

The Fine Detail

29. Steve Vai

Steve Vai Mandela Hall.

30. Conkers


I am not sure this post really even scratches the surface of the various photographic opportunities that arose during 2013. There was the Rams’ Pocket Radio album shoot, the subsequent Beton album launch. There were many other gigs, locations and events that haven’t made it here but it doesn’t dissolve their importance in what was a great year. Let’s just hope 2014 can equal it, X-Pro2?

To watch the photographic evolution of 2014 make sure you are following FlixelPix on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr.


FlixelPix 2013
FlixelPix 2012
FlixelPix 2011

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.

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Tags: , , , , , , Last modified: February 22, 2014