Best Pictures 2013 Edition =)

Last year was a great year and this year has already started off with a bang. From 2013 I have over 4,000 pictures saved on my computer and that’s not counting all of the video that I took either.

Today isn’t about videos though, it’s about my favorite pictures from 2013. It was tough to narrow it down, my first run through I ended up with 109 pictures selected. I figured that was a little much, but to narrow it down I must have gone through all of the pictures 20-30 times. In the end these are the best pictures 2013 edition that I selected.

1)  Long Way Down

best pictures 2013, little spider, spider, insect, rock

I found this little guy on one of our trips to the Botanical Garden in Santo Domingo. I flipped my lens around to get a makeshift macro lens and got this.

2) Little Red

best pictures 2013, lady bug, red, bug, insect, green

I used the same flipped lens trick to capture this little guy as well. This time around we were getting some fresh organic veggies =). I also believe this was one of our first wallpaper Wednesdays. You can find that HERE.

3) Husband and Wife

green parrots, parrot, animal, green, kuka
Earlier in the year we had a group of green parrots move into our front yard. They showed up every morning for a few months and then flew off. A couple of months later we were lucky enough to have them come back and spend some more time. I managed to get a bunch of pictures and some video footage as well.

4) The Survivor

lizard, animal, scales, cool

When I first got to the Dominican Republic I started working at a surf school. I saw this little guy on the beach a few times a week for the next two years. He’s been through some close calls as there where a couple of times that he looked pretty beat up.

5) Wanderlust Blues

bird, rocks, animals, ocean, morning

About halfway through our 30 days – 30 sunrises – 30 pictures challenge I saw this little guy hopping around the rocks. At one point he stopped to look out at the ocean for quite a while. It made me feel like he had the wanderlust blues.

6) Ready For Take Off

tower, sunrise, sun, yellow, gold
This is another one from our 30 day sunrise challenge and one of my favorites out of the collection. The sun rising under the tower makes me feel like the tower is getting ready to leave our planet.

7) Choose Your Path

sand, footprints, beach

Some of you may have seen this picture as one of our wallpaper Wednesdays. It’s back again to make it’s way into my top 30 pictures of 2013 list. Usually we see people looking back at their footprints, this time they are laid out in front of us, do we walk the same path or take a different route when we can see where our footprints will lead? Check out the wallpaper version of this HERE.

8) Frozen in Time

best pictures 2013, frozen, wave, water, ocean, crystal blue

If you saw our crashing wave photo essay you’ll remember this picture. This is one of my favorites from the set because the thickness of the wave makes it look like ice. A split second caught in time.

9) A Splash of Beauty

best pictures 2013, wave, close up, water, ocean, nature

Another one of my favorites from the crashing wave photo essay. Freezing a wave in place is awesome because you can look at every detail with all the time in the world.

10) Weeeeeeee

splash, water, droplets, big splash

A while ago we went to Lake Dudu which is a beautiful lake inside of cliff walls of about 20-40 feet. Jumps and zip lines are set up for visitors’ enjoyment, and enjoy it we did. This is from the splash of one of us jumping off one of the higher areas. I decided to flip the picture upside down because I felt like it made the shot more interesting.

11) Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls

waterfall, river, water, splash

That’s not true, DO go chasing waterfalls =P. This was shot when we went on an epic canyoning adventure with Iguana Mama. We rappelled down two waterfalls and jumped off of some others. All in all, a great day!

12) Birds Eye View

best pictures 2013, waterfall, beautiful, nature, water

With a neutral density filter you can capture some amazing images. Things like water coming off of a small rock, at the right angle, looks like a giant water fall seen from a helicopter. I love changing up the perspective in photography to create landscapes within landscapes.

13) Water Drop Slide

best pictures 2013, water, drops, leaf, nature

One chilly morning we decided to head to the Taino Farms. Before we headed out we stopped by eXtreme Hotels permaculture garden. It had just rained so all of nature was riddled with water droplets. These droplets where shot on top of a banana leaf. Also I’d like to note that this is officially our first Wallpaper Wednesday!

14) In the Zone

amazing, surfer, surf, waves, water, ocean

Surfing for some is a hobby, for others a sport, and for few a passion. This is one surfer who surfs with passion. Out in the water everyday I’ve seen him do six hour sessions like it’s nothing, catching waves almost the entire time he’s in the water. We’ve spent a lot of time surfing and learned a lot as well. Jade even put together 10 life lessons that she learned from surfing.

15) Bike Skills

 bmx, bike, tricks, skills

One of the days that my parents were visiting we decided to head to the Malecon (road that borders the ocean). We saw a giant air bubble that kids could get into (pictured to the right) and off in the distance I saw this guy holding his own on his BMX bike. I got closer and snapped a couple of shots. I also gave him my business card and let him know pics and videos would be sent for free but I never heard from him.

16) Chosen

soccer, dust, dirt, kids, play

For some time now my dad has been starting up a soccer charity in Cabarete. When I first moved down here I put it into full force with 2-3 practices a week. We would play into the sunset many times and the light made for some great pictures. With all the dirt flying around from the field and the rays shinning through, it made this young soccer player look epic.

17) Light Meditation

best pictures 2013, light painting, cool, paint, trick photography

We did a LOT of light painting last year. My aunt and uncle brought me a set of multicolored lights from the states and we enjoyed them significantly. This was a joint effort with my brother making the design, Jade holding the button and me sitting as still as possible.

18) Sleepy Jade

girl, sleep, bench, mexican hat

We all have those days were we need to sleep. We live a pretty active life so every once in a while we like to take midday naps. Even if that means on a bench at a beach bar =D.

19) Why so Serious?

face paint, halloween, make up

For Halloween Jade and I dressed up as sailors. The next day was day of the dead so we also got some face painting in. This is my cousin who lives in the capital. This one definitely deserves a place on the list because of both his expression, and how he painted his face.

20) Don’t Eat the Fire!

eat, fire, flames, eating fire

We’ve seen quite a few fire dancing shows thanks to Kaicetos Circus. I love the effect that a long exposure picture gives to the fire dancers. Their faces are lit up just enough to capture the movement and get a general idea that it’s a person.


best pictures 2013,fire dance, hula hoop, fire, dance

The great thing about post processing is that you get to change the colors. This lady was fire dancing with a hula hoop but the movement in her upper body gave a really cool effect to the picture. I changed the color to blue to make it seem more like lightning than fire.

22) Aliens!

sea urchin, art, animal, skeleton

We spent a lot of time beach combing and collecting all sorts of awesome things. We found quite a few sea urchin skeletons and Jade had the awesome idea to put some air plants in them and hang them off of a small tree in our yard. They took very well and all three of them have been hanging there, floating around, capturing visitors’ attention.

23) Symmetry

sand dollar, animal, skeleton

I found this sand dollar while snorkeling in Sosua Bay. I saw it almost at the beginning of our snorkel and was afraid that it would break before I got it home but decided to give it a try anyways. Three hours later we made it home and it was intact! Thankfully so, as it made for some great pictures. You can find this sand dollar as one of our wallpaper Wednesdays as well.

24) She Sells Sea Shells

sea shell, complicated, shell, ocean, life

My uncle in the capital collects sea shells. That’s great for me because sea shells hold some very intricate designs which makes for great pictures. This was also featured as a wallpaper Wednesday and can be found HERE.

25) The Hustle

empty, coke, coke bottles

On a day I was lacking inspiration I decided to head to the streets of Cabarete, with my camera, to see if I could run across something interesting. It was midday so the light was really sharp but I love how it reflects through and bounces off of the Coca Cola bottles.

26) Layers

sails, windsurf, wind, sailing, orange

I got this the same day as the shot above but from the beach side. We have a lot of windsurf schools in the area and most of them hang their sails up one in front of the other. During the right time of the day the sunlight shines through them causing their colors to glow. I’ve used a lot of wallpaper Wednesdays in this post but that’s just because I like giving you guys my favorite shots for your desktop background =D. You can find this one HERE.

27) Top of the Caribbean

sunrise, mountains, landscapes

A few months ago we climbed to the top of Pico Duarte. It’s the highest point of elevation in the entire Caribbean and it was beautiful! We woke up at 3am to hike to the peak so that we could watch the sun rise from the top and this is a small taste of what we saw.

28) I Just Drooled a Little

fish, dinner, good food

We ate a LOT of good food last year. This shot was for a local restaurant called the Sea Horse Beach Club and was one of the best plates I’ve ever eaten. So savory and juicy and…. I’ll be right back, going to get some more =)

29) Randomness

baseball, horse, fire, field, throwing

Here in the DR the locals set the lagoons on fire to scare out the turtles and any other animals that they can potentially eat. It’s not very practical and very frowned upon from most locals but it still happens, and way too often. We saw the smoke from a distance and rode to the source. This is what we pulled up to.

30) Lights On…. Lights Off

best pictures 2013, lights, row, bokeh, photography

Andddd I end this list with my favorite bokeh shot.


Looking back I can’t believe that so much happened in 2013. It is a full year after all but time seems to fly when you’re having a good time =). For 2014 we already have huge amounts planned and can’t wait for all of the new picture opportunities coming. I hope you enjoyed my best pictures of 2013!

What are your favorites from this list? Did I miss any that you have seen on our blog that you think should have made the list?
Do you have a top anything of 2013 that you want us to check out?




    1. Thanks, glad you enjoyed them! Also, if you have an 18-55 or something similar you can just flip the lens around or buy some extension tubes on ebay (10usd).

      I don’t recommend doing the flipped lens trick if you live in a dusty environment like the tropics.
      Gabriel Harding recently posted…Trouble at the BorderMy Profile

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