Monday, January 18, 2016

Best of 2015

2015 was a great year for me, as I continued to develop both my passion for wildlife photography as well as dramatically improve my photography skills. One of my biggest accomplishments this past year was finally understanding how to successfully take BIF's (short for birds-in-flight) photos.

2015 was also filled with many wonderful adventures. There are some photos that I couldn't include, because, well, then there wouldn't be 15 photos for the year '15!!! It should be easier when I post 16 photos next year... :)

15 Favorite from 2015...

 1. A starry night in Iceland. This photo was actually a complete accident! We went out with a small tour group to see the northern lights. Instead, our van got stuck in the snow and the aurora never showed up. I took this photo of the stars over a mountain pass while our van driver got the van out of the snow. This turned out to be one of my favorite photos from the trip!

 2. Right as I was walking back to my car this short eared owl showed up on a post in front of me. Just look at those sharp talons of his and his bright yellow eyes! I'm so glad I'm not a mouse or a vole!

 3. A northern pygmy owl that I saw last February. These small yet fierce owls can catch small songbirds in flight! A good day not to be a sparrow....

 4. Heart-shaped aurora borealis from Fairbanks, Alaska. You can see some light cloud cover here, but I think it adds an extra dimension to the photo.

 5. While on the San Juan Island ferry this past spring, I noticed a bald eagle off in the distance on a foggy forested hillside.

 6. A Washington state ferry in front of Mount Baker. One of those iconic only in Washington State moments...

 7. I saw my first (and only!) red fox San Juan Island this past spring. I'm really hoping to spend some more time with these animals in 2016.

 8. Mallard ducklings swimming past me in some gorgeous evening light. I was laying flat on a dock to get this shot. The low point of view combined with a wide aperture gave me a reflection of all the ducks and reduced the background clutter.

 9. An opsrey fishing over the Pacific Ocean in Lincoln City, Oregon.

 10. I found this least sandpiper in the mud on the Edmonds beach. I had to lay down in the mud and seaweed to get this shot, but it was so worth it to be surrounded by these little shorebirds!

 11. September's super blood moon over Seattle University's Chapel of St. Ignatius and the Immaculate Conception Church in downtown Seattle. This is a single exposure!

 12. One of our new Southern Resident Killer Whales, L-122, with L-91 Muncher! New orcas don't get their names until they're a year old. I was so fortunate to be on one of the first boats to see this new orca calf!

 13. Star trails over San Juan Island. This is a composite of 186 photos, hand-blended to get the comet-like fading star trail effect.

 14. A bald eagle landing with a fish it just caught from Lake Washington.

15. A gecko almost escapes from the egret that caught it for lunch. Read my previous blog post to hear all about that story!

Thank you all for following my photographic adventures in 2015. I'm looking to expand my audience, so please feel free to share my blog and my Facebook page with your friends! I would love to hear your feedback about my blog. What articles do you want to see this year? Tutorials, field notes, video tutorials,... Anything else you wish to see? If you're in the Puget Sound region, feel free to also follow Whale Scout on Facebook. Whenever there are whales in the area they'll let you know where you can see them with one of their land-based naturalists!


  1. Great collection, Tyler! There are always so many opportunities here in the Northwest, both for wildlife and scenic beauty... keep on clickin'!

  2. Great collection, Tyler! There are always so many opportunities here in the Northwest, both for wildlife and scenic beauty... keep on clickin'!