The Best of 2010 – Reflections

As the year is drawing to a close, I thought I’d put together a short list of what I consider my  most memorable shots of the year. The selection is based on both viewer feedback and my own attachment to a particular shot. For behind each photograph is a story to tell, a little something for me to remember them by, and some have proven to be more memorable than others. If you have not followed my work on Flickr, this is a good sampling of my work.

I’ve decided to categorize them into such : (1) REFLECTIONS (2) BRIDGES (3) FOUNTAINS (4) LIGHT TRAILS and  (5) MY PERSONAL FAVORITES.

Starting off with my Top Ten Favorite Reflection shots of the year.


I love to shoot where there is water – rivers, canals, rain and puddles, fountains, moats, pools, even a baptismal font as I’ve recently discovered. So I have many photos to choose from in this category. If I had to guess, I’d say about 80% of my shots has water in it, and probably half of that involves rain before or during the shot. When planning for travel, I usually go where there’s lots of water; if there’s none, I’ll find it. Or sometimes it finds me, in the case of rain.

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN - View of Gamla Stan from Slussen. Stockholm is without any doubt a beautiful city, but by nightfall it loses its luster, at least to a photographer. I would have liked to have seen more light in the city. This shot of the popular district Gamla Stan was taken on my second night after a disappointing rainy previous night. Scandinavian countries have long blue hours and I must have shot non-stop for at least an hour-and-a-half this night, walking about a mile and a half from Slussen to Skeppsholmsbron with hardly any people on the streets.

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK - Nyhavn Harbour. Rain followed me from Stockholm to Copenhagen. This shot of Nyhavn Harbour was taken on my second night as well because of rain on the first night. When I first started photography, I remember reading Brian Peterson's books including "Understanding Exposure." One of the best advice that stuck to mind and one that I now live by is to "GET YOUR SHOT." I had to make sure I got this shot before leaving Denmark.

DUSSELDORF, GERMANY - Frank Gehry buildings in the New Harbour. I had to come back twice to Dusseldorf to get this shot, and you've guessed it - because of rain. Not an original shot by any means, but something I would like to have as well.

LYON, FRANCE - St. Georges Church on the Saône River. It's not only Paris that's known as the City of Lights in France, Lyon is too, and she does not disappoint. I remember walking down the riverbank earlier that night planning my shots when a suspicious fellow tried to get my attention. He stayed in his spot for a long time so I had to work my shots around to avoid him. It was a clear night, and although the area reeked of sewage, I endured all that for the sake of shots like this.

BERLIN, GERMANY. Paul Lobe and the Marie Elisabeth Marie Elisabeth Lüders Haus in the River Spree. Early morning in Berlin and never have I felt safer than in this area surrounding Pariser Platz. Lights in Berlin are up from sundown to sunrise, no wonder it's one of my favorite cities in Germany.

VALENCIA, SPAIN - L'Hemisfèric and El Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia. I was stuck in Valencia for 5 days due to Iceland's volcanic ash, and for a photographer to be stranded in a city with great architecture, it's not a bummer. I had already packed up for the night after shooting blue hour in the City of Arts and Sciences when I noticed the sky changing colors fast. I unpacked and re-shot and was happy I did.

HANNOVER, GERMANY - Neues Rathaus or the New City Hall. Not really a great night to be out shooting in this city as Hannover was celebrating their own local schoolgirl Lena Meyer-Landrut's win in the Eurovision Singing Competition in Norway. Lots of rowdy teenagers that night, drunk and throwing bottles in the lake. I had to clone out a couple of those bottles, but it wasn't too bad.

COCHEM, GERMANY - Cochem Castle on the Mosel. Another night with drunken men hovering around me, trying to get in the picture. I escaped unharmed with this beauty of a shot. Like many smaller cities, Cochem was a bit dark at night, but I was glad that the castle, at least, showed signs of life.

MORITZBURG, GERMANY - Schloss Moritzburg. This was taken with a 10-stop ND filter, a 30-second exposure in the afternoon. A heavy downpour happened just a couple of hours before this, and when it cleared, the clouds were rushing across the sky. I wished I had taken this at blue hour but sadly I can't travel 10 miles between Dresden and Moritzburg within one blue hour, and I already planned to be in Dresden that night.

BURANO, ITALY - Colored Houses by the Canal. I could not make up my mind about which photo should take the last spot in this category, and this one is not really my favorite. I'm including it here because a lot of people liked it. Wished I had taken it a little earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon when the light is softer, but it's one of those days you just have to schedule everything in one day.

*These images are available for licensing. Contact me if interested. DO NOT USE without permission.


4 responses

  1. I like to meet here again some of my best loved pictures of the last year! I hope you feel fine, Yen, and wish you all the best for 2011!

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