Resolution pollution: Here's my 30

December 28, 2012 

My year in photojournalism was mixed, with a great success in realizing my goal of an election-themed football preview, but generally feeling like I was on a plateau in my photojournalism development.

I had planned on rehashing my stolen idea of highlighting my 10 worst published photos of the year from my 2010 recap, but felt decidedly "meh" while digging through the year's archive.

It's not that I didn't file any stinkers, they just weren't as bad as they have been in the past.

My bad portraits weren't nearly as awful and having better control of my lighting means the turds are usually technically sound, but boring. I wasn't as desperate in my feature hunts to file lame slices of life and I'm making fewer boneheaded exposure mistakes while on assignment.

These marks of growth are joined by my improving video production and design work. I've slapped together a few logos for story series, a graph or two and I even teamed up with Jake Dorsey for a Sunday front page design:

And while my video skills are far from polished, I've managed to put together a few worth watching:

But my title is still photojournalist, so here are my 30 favorite from 2012:

While browsing through my best-ofs this year, I noticed a lot more portraits, an aesthetic trend toward more simple compositions, a total lack of photo stories and fewer strong moments in the mix.

My recent push to improve my portraits certainly fed into this, as does my increased devotion toward video production. I tend to rely more on safe CYAs while on assignment before going crazy to collect clips in the hopes of impressing the dozens of people who watch our videos.

It's a necessary skill to improve if I want to keep working in this industry, though, but as I turn the page on 2012, it's time to refocus on what drew me to this profession in the first place -- stories and moments.

I am enjoying the diversity of my work too, though, so I'd like to keep working on all the areas I've branched into.

Here's hoping '13 will be a lucky year as I push myself in more directions than ever.


It's end-of-the-year-recap-palooza all over the internet. The usual suspects all revisit the year in pictures, with The Big Picture and In Focus both showing their edits in three parts. The Big Picture also included a nature photo roundup, which also features a shot by the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin's Jeff Horner (#30).

As for the newsy photos, there are some unsurprising overlaps from the big news of the year, but also some interestingly different choices from the same events. Each had a few photos that made me think "oh yeah!" and wonder why it wasn't included in the other edit. You can't go wrong with either or with browsing through both, though.

If you're more into brevity, Lens presents much tighter edits.

Time pays tribute to the photographers who died in 2012.

PDN features their top photo news stories of the year.

The Dallas Morning News' Gerry McCarthy has a funny post recounting his stumble at a recent NFL game.

Seattle-based photojournalist Jordan Stead is featured on The Image, Deconstructed.

And if you're not burned out on the Big Picture, check out a cool story about children raised by women behind bars.

Happy New Year!

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