Favorite Images From 2018

December 21, 2018  •  1 Comment

2018 has been a year that I will always remember for a few personal and photography accomplishments.  First, on the personal side this year, with A LOT of help from family and friends, my wife and I built our forever home.  And, of course, we decided to build during one of Virginia's rainiest years on record.  This meant for the first half of the year, almost every free moment my wife and I had, we were busy working on the house, which left little time for anything else. Even though I didn’t have as much free time as in years past, my family and I still continued to explore new and old places in Shenandoah National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway. When Virginia got a late snow in March, I snuck away for a few hours and headed to the Blue Ridge Parkway to photograph the beautiful snow covered peaks at sunset.  As spring turned to summer, we finished our house, and in mid-June, we got our permit for occupancy! We moved in just in time before my very busy photography schedule started. 

In June, my friends Mike, Tom, and I got to explore the Shenandoah Valley for a few days as we filmed a few videos for Virginia Tourism.  Well, Mike and Tom did most the filming; I mostly tagged along carrying gear, taking behind the scenes images, and learned a lot from both of them about the video world.   On the last day, as we were filming Skydive Shenandoah, we needed another subject to film jumping out of the plane, so I volunteered, and I got to skydive for the first time, which was an awesome experience and another personal accomplishment. Then in late June, I headed up to New York’s Catskills Mountains for a fun weekend teaching my first ever photography workshops for The Outbound: Pursuit Series.  I had a great time teaching and helping other people improve their photography skills.  It was also awesome working with fellow landscape photographer Jason, my co-photography instructor, and the rest of The Outbound Media Team.  When Jason and I were not instructing, we got to hang out with other outdoor enthusiasts while trying a bunch of new outdoor activities.   Once the event was over, I could not wait for the second event in my home state of California to start.

In early August, my family and I flew back to California to visit my family and so I could teach a bunch of photography workshops at the second The Outbound: Pursuit Series in the Sierra Mountains.  We were in California when most of the state was on fire, which included a fire that was only about seven miles from the event site. My brother, who is a wild land fire fighter, was working that fire, so I got to see him for about an hour as we grabbed dinner the night before the event started.  The next morning, the smoke was so thick that I had about ½ mile visibility, but this thick smoke helped make some awesome images as I hiked though a grove of sequoia trees. As the morning turned to afternoon, the winds finally switched just as the event participants started to arrive.  Once again, I had a great time at teaching a series of photography workshops and hanging out with my co-instructors Jason and Scott, along with the rest of The Outbound Media Team. Everyone I talked to had an outstanding time, and we got lucky because the wind continued to blow the smoke from the nearby fire away from the event, and it helped create some beautiful sunsets.  After the event, my family and I flew back to Virginia, and I started to explore and plan out my locations to capture the fall colors.

This year has been a strange weather year in the mid-Atlantic region of the country. As I said earlier, Virginia and most of the East Coast got record rainfall, and because of all of this rain, I was looking forward all year to fall. Why? Because as a landscape photographer, the rain makes the leaves’ colors more vibrant when they turn, and the rain also helps the leaves stay on the trees longer because they don’t dry out as fast. But the Mid-Atlantic never got a good cold snap to get the leaves to start turning colors. September hit, and the mid-Atlantic was still having summer temperatures. Then October started, and it was still 90 degrees outside, and everything was still green. It wasn’t until mid-October that it FINALLY started to feel like fall, but by that point in time, it was too late in most areas; most of the leaves just turned brown and fell off the trees.  But there were small pockets of fall colors, and one of these pockets just happened to be at a location I’ve been scouting for years. This year, I was FINALLY able to photograph the beautiful Glade Creek Grist Mill with fall colors and water flowing over the falls. Even though the leaves never really turned color in most areas, my family and I a great time camping in West Virginia and Shenandoah National Park as we were hunting for pockets of color.  2018 was a great year and ended with a huge amount of snow.  This year has been a blast, and I will remember the events forever.  As I’m looking forward to the adventures of 2019, below are my 15 favorite images from this year.  Make sure you click the link below each image to learn some photography tips.

Hiking Little Stony ManHiking Little Stony ManThe Appalachian Trail runs through the heart of Shenandoah National Park and long the way it allows hikers to experience some of the best view not only in Shenandoah but in Virginia. Hiking the Appalachian Trail in 19 degrees weather, (before the wind chill), was totally worth it to watch such an amazing sunset from Little Stony Man in Shenandoah. I love hiking during the winter because the crisp cold air takes a way the haze on the horizon, making the views even more spectacular.

Click here to lean how to photograph Little Stonyman

Brandon Dewey Photography (www.bdeweyphoto.com)

Click here to lean how to photograph Chimney Rock Mountain Overlook

Black Rock Summit SunriseBlack Rock Summit SunriseBlackrock Summit has the best view of Shenandoah National Park in the Southern District. This 270 degree view of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains makes this summit a must for any photographer. Click Here for tips on how to Photograph Black Rock Summit

Spitler Knoll OverlookSpitler Knoll OverlookSpitler Knoll Overlook is a great place to enjoy sunsets because, unlike most other places in the Shenandoah, Spitler Knoll is a large grassy hillside leading down to views of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah Valley.

Click here to learn how to Photograph Spitler Knob Overlook

Brandon Dewey Photography (www.bdeweyphoto.com)

Why you should use a Telephoto Lens

Sunset at Bearfence MountainSunset at Bearfence MountainBearfence Mountain is one of the best 360 degree views in Shenandoah National Park, which makes it ideal for photographers. Bearfence Mountain is located in the Central District of Shenandoah in between Big Meadows and Lewis Mountain. Click here to lean tips to photograph Bearfence Mountain

Tips for photographing the Milky Way 

Click here for composition techniques

Click here for essential landscape photo tips

Why you should use a telephoto lens in landscape photography

Waterfall Photography Tips

Fall Landscape Photo Tips

Photograph Babcock State Park


Fall Landscape Photo Tips

Winter Landscape Photo Tips


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There are a boundless number of options here! Before long, I like to photograph pay phones and bicycles, similarly as nature shots featuring a lone tree, and I've been building up a genuine collection of these themes over the span of late years. By and by, at whatever point I'm out with my Nikon.
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