Best of Strobist: 2013 Edition

The end of the year is a great time to take a moment to reflect on what you have learned and/or accomplished in the last 365 days. Traditionally on Strobist, we take the last few days to look back, to buy a little family time and plan for the next year's adventure.

2014 holds some big changes for me. And because of the format and project changes coming up, this may well be the very last "Best of" post I'll ever write. So let's get on with it…


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The first thing I always do is to collect a small portfolio of my favorite images from the past year. There are no criteria other than the fact that these are my faves. I am not applying for a job with this yearly selection, just examining what I've done.

I highly recommend it to any photographer as a way to step back and take a 50,000-foot view once a year.

One thing that immediately jumps out at me: most of my favorite photos this year were shot on Fuji X-cameras. And of those, mostly the X100s. I think maybe it is getting to be time to hold a Nikon garage sale.

Along with the yearly edit, I like to go back through the site's posts for the year and pull out a few of my favorites and (based on readership) a few of yours. In no particular order and without further ado or explanation, here they are.

From 2013, I will remember:

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• Preparing for battle with a 1,300-person group shot

• Firing back at a bunch of well-funded cheapskates

• Working through fast-moving light with a Broadway star

• Sara Lando's wonderful 3-part series with Greg Heisler

• Stone soup: a scout and shoot in a blank office

• Finding the camera I wanted to marry

• A raw, method-acting portrait session

• Leaf-syncing my X100s with late sun and a beautiful soprano

• Seven strobes in my back yard leading to a minor scientific discovery

• Discovering and chasing light in Havana, Cuba

• Zack "Grandmaster Flash" Arias' entrance dance in the Shootout in Dubai

• A cool DIY tool that is almost literally duct tape and clothes hanger wire

• Reminiscing about the good old (analog) days: Photoshop Zero Point Zero

• A quick, cheap, impromptu living room studio

• Sharing the most glorious newb screwup I ever had

• Discovering my favorite TV show was really a stealth master class in lighting

But mostly when it comes to Strobist I will remember the new friends made and old ones revisited, the amazing pictures I got to see, the near constant stream of conversations with you guys on Twitter and my gratitude for your continued camaraderie in the worldwide circle of photography and photographers.

A belated Merry Christmas/happy holidays/Happy New Year (choose any which apply) to all of you guys. Please do feel free to ping me back with any of your favorite posts (included or missed), thoughts for 2014 or just the usual smartass remarks via post hashtag #Strobist2013.

2014 will be a year of big and (I hope) wonderful changes for me. As it will, I hope, for each of you.

Happy New Year,


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