For me the beginning of the year is a time to refresh and experiment, and this year I was fortunate to join a group of fellow photographers for a one-day creative getaway, a sort of self-guided workshop. I had been dreaming up an idea to make video portraits using a wash of changing colors, and I was able to make it happen using my colleagues as models. Much thanks to all the photographers and friends who stepped into my weird world of color.

(Shot on a Lumix GH5, still frames pulled from 4K video, video below)

Recently spent a few spring days in the desert, camping, hiking, mountain biking, and making a few photographs.

Last year was a big deal for me: My first child was born and I had the busiest year of my career. Most of my work time involved shooting weddings, work that you can see on my wedding photography website. Most of my personal time involved preparing for and caring for an infant. So there’s not much in my annual photographic output to choose from for a “best of” blog post. So I’ll keep it short.

I continued to shoot many pictures with my iPhone. Here are my favorites.

My best and most important efforts of 2013 involved my baby daughter, Lila Jayne. I shot an unbelievable amount of pictures of her, as you might expect. This one is my favorite:

This year’s crop of favorite pictures is a pretty eclectic mix compared to past years of my career. Normally, the list is filled with pictures from newspaper assignments; this year’s list contains just three. In fact, very little assignment work is represented here, unless you count self-assignments, which I gave myself a lot of this year. This was my first full year as a freelance photographer, so the assignment work was varied, the personal work was frequent, and the wedding work will appear on another website. I’m looking forward to 2013, which will see a whole new portfolio for me and hopefully another diverse mix of favorite photos to reflect on at the end of the year.

In October I had the pleasure of serving as a support crew member for a two-man relay team competing in the Furnace Creek 508, a 508-mile bike race that goes through the Mojave Desert and Death Valley. It was my first time in such a role, and the experience taught me a lot about cycling and endurance. We left at 9:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning and finished around 10:30 p.m. on Sunday night; I got about two hours sleep in the passenger seat and was exhausted, so I can only imagine how tired the riders must have been. Still, despite the suffering and grinding and constant pedaling in the heat and wind and hills, the race seemed fun. And for the people who manage to finish it, quite an achievement.

Somewhere around the middle of the race, late at night in Death Valley, watching Ken pedal fast through the flats while enjoying relatively pleasant temperatures, I saw a shooting star and quietly vowed to someday complete this race myself. I’ve got a lot of practicing to do before then — first I’m just going to try to make it 200 miles.

Below are some of the photos I shot on the trip, and at the bottom of this post is a time lapse video I made with photos from a GoPro camera that I attached to the inside of the van’s window.