As cliche as this may be, I find writing out the highlights of the year a fun and satisfying exercise. Maybe it helps me put the year in perspective. Maybe it helps spur new ideas for the year to come. Mostly, it is my way of putting the year neatly away to make room for the coming year – a proverbial cleaning of the desk, so to speak.
So here are some of the top places I’ve seen and things I’ve done – or been a part of in 2015 – from the start of the year through the end.
This year was the year I finally traveled below the equator. I spent a week on Gili Air island – one of the three Gili islands just off the coast of Lombok, Indonesia.
Gili is spectacular.
On the list of things you can do there – snorkel, scuba, paraglide, surf, kitesurf, swim with sea turtles, hike an active volcano, ride horses, beach bike, lounge, dine on fresh from the sea seafood, drink, beach party, watch sunsets.
One thing you will not do there – ride in a car. Autos are prohibited from the island.
The place is truly a globetrotter’s top world destination.
Return to Xinyu
Over the May holiday, I took a trip north, back to Xinyu – the small town south of Jiujiang that I included in my book, Jiujiang: Nine Rivers, written in 2009.
It was interesting to see what six years has done for the development of train travel in China. Here is a comparison look at what travel by train looked like in 2009, and what it looks like now – in 2015.
Over the summer, I had the fortune of working with a high-end clothier in Guangzhou on a self-driven fashion project I’d been thinking about for awhile. The project was straightforward enough – work with complimentary and analogous colors between the clothing and the environment. We found a location with suitable colored textured walls for backgrounds, picked out a selection of clothes that suited the mood of the project and went to work.
Here are some of the highlights from that shoot.
This year was my fifth year leading a Worldwide Photo Walk with Kelby Media Group – formerly the National Association for Photoshop Professionals.
In five years we have filled the registered walker limit of 50 walkers four times. This year we exceeded the walker limit by more than any year prior.
We walked through the Dongshankou neighborhood this year – our fifth unique neighborhood in five years.
I have always made it a point not to return to the same place twice. We did, however, have a two-time walk winner this year, which was pleasant surprise.
Of course these are just the highlights. There were other photo assignments, other places I visited, and other things that took place. It has been a wild and fun-filled year of adventures. Thank you to everyone that was a part of my 2015. Thank you for the opportunities and the experiences. In 2016, I am looking forward to more amazing adventures, meeting new people, taking part in exciting events, and always with the camera at the ready.
Cheers! Happy New Year!