My 2018 Favorite Images and the Stories Behind Them

Happy New Year. I hope your 2018 was filled with joy and happiness.

Every year I really enjoy reliving the past year through my photos. I find the process of selecting my favorite 10 from the previous year enlightening. 2018 was filled with travels to new places and many new experiences. One thing about photography that few people talk about is that you get to relive those experiences again and again. Many years ago, we put our favorite photos in family albums, so it was easy to relive those special moments. Today, it takes a little effort.  Far too often our digital images are buried away in one of many disk drives. May I suggest you go find your 2018 photos. Take the time to select your favorite 10. Reflect on why they are your favorite. You will learn so much about where you have been and just maybe a little insight into where you are going.

So once again… in no particular order, here are my favorite images of 2018 and the stories behind them.

Atlas V Launch - Port Canaveral, FL

Atlas V Launch – Port Canaveral, FL

One of the best things about living on the Space Coast of Florida is that you get to experience rocket launches that are common day and night. In early January, it was a fantastic night for a launch from the Kennedy Space Center. ULA’s Atlas V Space Based Infrared System (SBIRS) GEO Flight 4 mission lifted off from Space Launch Complex-41 at 7:48 p.m. EST. This long-exposure view of the rocket trail from the Exploration Tower in Port Canaveral provided a sight I will not soon forget. We live in a time where we enjoy so many technology innovations.


Excellent Student - Titusville, FL

Excellent Student – Titusville, FL

I had just walked into a popular coffee shop on a Saturday morning when this young student caught my eye. Her laptop, textbook, and notebooks spread across the table top next to the window. Capturing the moment, my college days flashed before me. Even in my old age I need to keep studying and learning new things. Learning really is a life-long process. What did I learn last year? What do I want to learn in the new year? Got to figure this out.


She Loves My Car - Melbourne, FL

She Loves My Car – Melbourne, FL

Row after row of vintage cars were in line across the parking lot as I strolled through the car show. There is something about vintage cars that takes those of us with a little bit of gray back to the times when our social network was connected by cars. No cell phones or personal computers. If you were lucky, you had a car to visit with friends or go on a date. I will always have a special fondness for our old car-driven social network. In this photo, a young woman was admiring a car like the one I learned to drive so long ago. I asked if I could take her photo and she gladly agreed. Another connection made by a vintage car network.


Longboard Girl - Cocoa Beach, FL

Longboard Girl – Cocoa Beach, FL

While we are on the subject of the “old days”, I offer a favorite photo of a Longboard Girl. When I was growing up on the East Coast of Florida all our surfboards were long. Today’s technology enables so many innovations in so many things including surfboards, but it is nice to see some the old ways still being used. Christa is a Longboard Girl. She frequently surfs at Cocoa Beach Pier. I thought this photo of her looked appropriately nostalgic. It is nice to revisit the old ways of doing things sometimes.


First Light - Maitland, Nova Scotia

First Light – Maitland, Nova Scotia

I awoke from a sound sleep to see this warm glowing light piercing through the window of our bed and breakfast inn. We were exploring Nova Scotia and the sunrises seemed more intense and colorful than we experience in our Florida humidity. I grabbed the camera and captured the scene. I couldn’t help but think it was a new day. . . a new opportunity to experience new things. I should keep this in mind in the new year.


Front Row Seats - Pictou Lodge - Pictou, Nova Scotia

Front Row Seats – Pictou Lodge – Pictou, Nova Scotia

As I walked up the hill in Pictou, the chairs seemingly sitting on the edge of the world came into view. Front Row Seats for anyone who wanted to enjoy the view. We all have opportunities to take the Front Row Seats on many situations if only we were brave enough. I going to try to take them more often in the new year. . . and really enjoy the view.


Perfect Reflection - St. Augustine, FL

Perfect Reflection – St. Augustine, FL

I found it interesting that the windows of an old run-down building in St. Augustine reflected a near perfect image of the well-kept house across the street. Despite their circumstances, these old windows kept reflecting what was good about the world around them. I think there is a message here for all of us in 2019 don’t you think?


As time goes by - Boneyard Beach, Big Talbot Island, FL

As time goes by – Boneyard Beach, Big Talbot Island, FL

I have always been fond of viewing motion depicted in a still photograph. Water moves with great efficiency around anything in its way and a slow shutter speed will capture the movement beautifully. The ocean at Boneyard Beach laps at the dead oak trees for just a few years before they dissolve into the sea. Time keeps going by. We are here temporarily, and time goes by way too quick. I need to make the most of it while I still have time.


Peggy's Point Lighthouse - Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia

Peggy’s Point Lighthouse – Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia

I have been fond of lighthouses ever since I can remember, and I am especially fond of this one on Peggy’s Point . Lighthouses are built to show those who navigate the sea the safe way to go. And they are always built on firm foundations, so we can depend on them no matter the intensity of the storm. This observation begs the questions. . . what should we base our personal foundation on? Who are we guiding to safer passages? It might do us well to understand what we value and stand firm on those values in the new year.


Together - Lunenburg, NS

Together – Lunenburg, NS

My last favorite photo of 2018 reflects the partnership my wife Nancy and I share. I can’t imagine not being together. I know what we have is special, and I look forward to another year exploring and discovering the world around us… together. Of all the special moments this past year, those we spent together were the best. May I suggest in the new year you step around in front of the camera more often. After all, the images you will appreciate the most will be those you take of your loved ones together.  And those are the images your family will appreciate most for generations to come.

In 2019, may your journey be filled with joy and remarkable moments. And as always, may the remarkable photos be yours.


10 thoughts on “My 2018 Favorite Images and the Stories Behind Them

  1. Your images and words are all beautiful again this year. May we all have a glorious year and the opportunity to see the world through our photos. Charlie Dodds.

  2. Chuck, thanks for posting!!! Enjoy looking at the beautiful pictures and reading the interesting narration of places you and Nancy visited. You’re one of my favorite photographers.

    Lek Wallace

  3. Chuck – your photos always tell a wonderful story all on their own, but your written stories are beautiful as well. I imagine you had a great time going back through the photos; thank you for sharing both the photos and your insights. Happy 2019 to you and your family; Debby Hamilton

  4. Your photography grabs the ordinary and transforms it into the extraordinary…a great lesson for life itself. Thank you Chuck for sharing your thoughts and expertise. We are so blessed with your generosity. May this New Year keep you and Nancy in its wonder! marcia kiernan

  5. Hi Chuck and Nancy,

    EXCELLENT photography and the stories bring each photo to fife and make it more interesting.

    Thanks for sending them to me.


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