Favorites of 2014

 "Autumn Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Autumn Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Like many artists, I like to review my work from the previous year to get a sense of what I've accomplished and to come up ideas with new ways forward as well. Things have been a bit crazy this year, so I'm just barely completing this process by the end of January, but the process remains the same.

The images in this post are my favorites of 2014. As time goes on, other images may replace some of these in my end, but these are the images that tell the story of 2014 for me. Please note that these are what I consider my favorites, not the best, a much different and of course subjective list.

As always, I'd love to hear what you think, so let me know if you have any favorites yourself!

I'll lead off this list with Autumn Moon I above, a photograph I created from the top of Cadillac Mountain during my Acadia artist residency. This was a moonset across Penobscot Bay -- that mountain in the lower right is actually Ducktrap Mountain (a/k/a Point Lookout) in Northport, probably 30 or 40 miles or so across the bay.

I've continued to work on my Pyrotechnic series throughout 2014 and I have a few favorites from this series. First up is this one, which is currently in my show at the 555 Gallery in Boston.

 "Pyrotechnic #128", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Pyrotechnic #128", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

This Pyrotechnic photograph was from the fireworks show in December and is one I haven't released yet. Some of this series, like this one, really sing when printed very large where you can see the seemingly infinite details.

 "Pyrotechnic #184", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Pyrotechnic #184", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

I particularly love this one...this one reminds me of a landscape drawing in the Chinese tradition, a particular influence on me right now.

 "Pyrotechnic #133", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Pyrotechnic #133", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

In a similar style is a new project I'm working on relating to beaches. I'm still working on how I want this series to look, so the final result may differ from this. This photograph is from a camping trip on Hermit Island here in Maine.

Even though this project is still in its formative stages, I can't tell the story of 2014 without remembering this particular beach on Hermit Island and the exciting process of finding this beach and creating these photographs.

 Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

My Adventures in Celestial Mechanics project was one of my primary focuses this year. Besides the Autumn Moon I photograph leading off this post, I also particularly loved Dog Days Moon I and Dragon Moon I, both of which explore a much different palette than my photographs from previous years.

 "Dog Days Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Dog Days Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

 "Dragon Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Dragon Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Rice Moon I, below, is in many ways of the perfect embodiment of my move towards abstraction with my full moon images.

 "Rice Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Rice Moon I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

My artist residency at Acadia National Park this year was of course a massive influence on my year, so it is not surprising that even more images from this 3-week timeframe make this list.

First up are two photographs from an amazing show of the Northern Lights from the top of Cadillac Mountain. I've been trying for years to photograph this type of display and finally succeeded, and it was one of the highlights of my year.

 "Nightsong I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Nightsong I", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

 "Nightsong II", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Nightsong II", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

During my residency I also photographed many of the other natural wonders of the Schoodic region of Acadia at all times of day and night. Schoodic has many wonderful features but the aspect that I will always associate with my time there is the clouds. I've never seen as beautiful and varied clouds as I've seen in my times there.

 Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

 Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Another new project I started in 2014 relates to Jasper Beach up in the Down East region, one of my favorites places in Maine. I'm still processing the first images but I love how things are looking so far...

 Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Yet another new project that is still under wraps involves moonlight...I'm still trying to decide how the project will go, but this early photograph has me excited about the possibilities. 

 Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

And last, but not least, another new project brought this night shot of a stop sign just around the corner from the house. That red line near the bottom is a car taillight during the long exposure. More on this and the other projects soon...

 "Stop Monsanto", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.

"Stop Monsanto", Copyright Jim Nickelson. All Rights Reserved.