Top 12 photos of 2022

It’s hard to pick just twelve.

I enjoyed photography in 2022 and decided to share my pick of favorites. It was not easy! 12 photos for 12 months – not one per month, but just the twelve that I felt were especially beautiful or interesting. See the full gallery – where I recommend clicking the “play” button to see them as a slideshow – and read on for some commentary about each one.

January – White Mountains, NH. This first photo was taken eight days into the new year, after a snowfall on Blueberry Mountain. The starburst reminds me of the crisp, clear air of winter in the mountains. [Blog post, with more photos.]

May – Post Mills, VT. There has long been a balloon festival at a tiny grass airstrip, at the break of day when the air is cool and still. I love the color of the balloons and the quiet chatter of the enthusiasts who meet to enjoy their sport. I like how the starburst peeks around the corner of the burner, evoking its power, as the balloon fills with hot air and is ready to soar. [Blog post]

June – Kiawah Island, SC. A mother osprey guards her nest while two chicks peek over the edge. I was pleased to capture these exciting birds in action, though only briefly. [Blog post]

July – Maine coast. The long-time proprietor of Lobster Buoy Campsites – and daughter of its founders – surveys the grounds on the morning of July 4th. I’m drawn to her face, wondering what is on her mind as she looks to something out of frame to the left. The photo has a depth of details, from the cigarette in her hand, to the clattering keychain on her waist, to the “4” candle next to her, to the wall-mounted bell for an unspecified purpose … and the gnome keeping an eye on us. [Blog post]

July 4, Acadia National Park, ME. I spent the holiday week exploring this island park; though small, it includes incredible variety of natural and human scenes. Despite the beautiful landscape, I chose two photographs that I thought were especially eye-catching. I like the first photo – of the historic town hall for the tiny town of Mount Desert – because of the reflected curve of the bridge and its American flag. The second photo was my attempt to capture one moment of the incredible fireworks display on the lawn of Bar Harbor’s waterfront. I like the color of the fireworks against the sky’s gradient from blue to black. [Blog post]

Mount Desert town historical site – Acadia
Fireworks in Bar Harbor (Acadia) on July 4th

July – White Mountains, NH. After my trip to Acadia I came back to the White Mountains of NH. There, on a hike along the Appalachian Trail as it climbs the southern edge of the Presidential Range, I paused to enjoy this small cascade known as Gibbs Falls. I like this photo because the light enabled me to capture the clarity of the pool as well as the softness of the flowing water. [Blog post]

August – Katmai National Park, Alaska. At the tail end of August I spent a week living on a boat along the shoreline of Katmai National Park, where the brown bears come to feast on the annual salmon run. I took 8,000 photos that week, and I selected four here. The first two exhibit the moment of capture and then of feasting. The third is a touching moment between mother and child, and the fourth is a young bear standing to cautiously monitor the approach of a potential adversary. [Blog posts start here]

A salmon flaps fruitlessly after being caught at the head of Geographic Harbor, Katmai.
A bear holds its fresh-caught salmon still so it can eat; in the river above Kuliak bay – Katmai.
Brown bear and cub – Geographic Harbor, Katmai.
A young bear pauses with his fish, standing to keep an eye on a bigger, older bear nearby; Geographic Harbor, Katmai

October – New Hampshire. Fall foliage season in New Hampshire is a real treat. On a short hike near Mount Moosilauke in early October I visited Slide Brook, capturing many peaceful scenes like this one. I like this photo because the colorful leaves decorate the moss-covered rocks of the stream. [Blog post]

Again, the best view is in the gallery – where I recommend clicking the “play” button to see them as a slideshow.

Looking forward to 2023, and new opportunities to refine my craft!

Author: dfkotz

David Kotz is an outdoor enthusiast, traveller, husband, and father of three. He is also a Professor of Computer Science at Dartmouth College.

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