Tonje Lilleås

My favorite images of 2021

Last year was a bit of a daft one when it comes to photography for me, but I still want to share my favorite images of 2021 with you guys. I hope you enjoy!

The Drone Shots

No doubt that buying a drone has opened up a new world for me. If you’re interested in getting my tips on drone photography as a beginner, I’ve written a whole post about it already. To no surprise a few of the drone shots made it into my favorite images of 2021.

First I want to share this one drone image from my dads cabin. I’ve spent so much time in this boat that is the main subject of the image as a child. And I love how the drone allows me to show it’s surroundings in a different way than I’ve usually seen it. There’s more life and color in the fjord than we can capture while seeing it from our point of view, and the top down introduce a lot of it.

Another shot that worked really well with the drone is this one where I captured the reflections of the sky in lake Mjovatn. I love the contrasting colors of the yellow fall leaves and the blue sky. And I also like that it’s not a top down shot, but rather a bit on an angle. When drone photography has been made so accessible to everyone, it takes a great deal of work to come up with something new. This image I feel is an image on my road to finding my style of drone photography.

The Action Shots

Now the reason why I’m including action camera shots into my favorite shots of 2021 is simply because I had a blast shooting them. Action camera shots are by nature a bit more saturated than I like them, and I had to fight that in post production. However I had so much fun shooting them, that I really like a few of them nonetheless.

This one image I spent so long being able to capture. I saw the oddly shaped branch and wanted to do something with it. My vision was to capture the shape of the branch kind of framing me hiking past. I think I hiked past at least 20 times before I made a decent result, but I had so much fun with the “nearly there” shots.

The portraits

I wanted to shoot more portraits in 2021. And I don’t think I did. But I did shoot a few that I just really loved. Mainly of my close family. I don’t know why, but I still find it really difficult to ask people if I can shoot their portrait. Even the people I know well. I think it’s a bit of imposter syndrome. But when I look at some of the portraits I’ve shot, I don’t necessarily think I need to be so afraid to ask. So I’m going to work on that. Here’s a couple of my favorite portraits of 2021. Let me know if you’d like to be in front of my camera in 2022!

The landscapes

One of my goals for 2021 was shooting more horizontal images. It’s so easy to stick with vertical shots, as that’s what we are used to from looking at our phones. However some of my favorite images of 2021 are horizontal landscape shots.

Two of my favorite images of 2021 were landscapes captured during my stay at Savalen in September. I really appreciate being able to shoot during both sunrise and sunset, and shooting familiar locations. The combination of golden light, pops of fall color and the serenity of the mountain just can’t wrong. Oh, and the lake reflections. You can’t forget the reflections.

The product and lifestyle shots

In the very beginning of this year I had project going on product photography. I really enjoyed having a clear subject to work around, trying to make the best image possible of it. In 2022 I really want to do more of these product shots, if nothing else than just for creative fun and improving my skills.

I also shot a series of lifestyle self portraits in Savalen in September that I really enjoyed. I’m going to share a post on how to capture better images of yourself as a solo shooter within the next few weeks, so make sure to subscribe to my blog if that’s something you’d like to learn more about. It’s always fun to have images of yourself. And a great advantage of capturing the images yourself, is that you get images where you do you and not someone else’s version of you.

Takeaway and future goals

So many of my favorite images of 2021 were shot within a week in Savalen last September. One thing I gather from that is that I need to prioritize getting away to focus solely on shooting more often. It doesn’t have to be a whole week. But I think I have to stop thinking that I will be able to squeeze in focused time to shoot while on vacation with my family.

This year I want to shoot new locations. Not necessarily far away, but different locations than I usually shoot. As mentioned above I also want to photograph more people. So if you’d like me to shoot your portrait, or you’d like to have a few nice shots of your kids, let me know. My focus on shooting more horizontal images also continues. And I have a whole new project with regards to video. But more on that later.

I hope you enjoyed my favorite images of 2021. And if you did, please consider subscribing to my blog and following me on Instagram. It would really make me happy. Remember that there’s always more to explore locally. And I’ll see you next week with more landscape and outdoor photography!



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