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My favorite photos of 2015

Girl cooking off after Fourth of July parade in Hailey, Idaho
MacArthur Park, Los Angeles

Tiny car and sign along Interstate 84 in very rural eastern Oregon.

In the past, I've tended to skew my year-end lists toward photos that I thought others may like -- or did like on social media.

This year I took a different tack: when reviewing I made in the past 12 months, I had one and only criteria: I picked the 10 that for whatever my reason were my personal favorites. I didn't worry about whether other people may like them or how accessible they may be to others.

If there's a tie that binds these images, it's this: I felt like I caught a good moment in each of the situations. A Special Olympian tracking a shuttlecock. A girl cooling off in the spray of a fire hose on the Fourth of July.  A singer reaching for the notes that would come next. A car on a lonely freeway onramp in eastern Oregon. Surfers swimming through a big wave.

In some ways, the past year was a transitional one for me as a photographer on two fronts. I was able to finally get a little bit of paid work. More importantly, I concentrated on taking photos of people, something I was previously reluctant to do -- and no good at. I'm still not really good, but I took some good steps in the right direction.

I've also spent a lot of time thinking about style -- if I had one, if I should have one, and how style may reflect my interests. Another thread that runs through many of the photos in this post: a lot of context. I often could have cropped some of these images tighter, but didn't.

Take, for example, the photo above of the figure skater. I shot hundreds of photos of a local competition that weekend and many of them feature skaters at their most graceful. But this one, I think, gets the essence of the sport: someone out there all alone being judged -- and, in the case above, being judged while no one else is much interested.

Of course, by tomorrow I may choose another 10 photos. In that spirit, after the jump I've posted some other photos from 2015 that I liked. Thanks for looking!

Castaic Lake in early August 2015 when the lake was at 39 percent capacity.

Wild burro, Owens Valley, California
Woman and dog at a campfire, Wrights Lake

Freighter making its way down Columbia River as seen from Fort Stevens State Park in Oregon
Rodeo in Hailey, Idaho

Kayaking on Jackson Lake, Grand Teton National Park

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The above photos are ©Steve Hymon and may not be used elsewhere without my advanced written permission. All rights reserved.

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