2015 Image of the Year Poll – Vote Now!

Images and article by Greg W. Gilstrap.  With the New Year just around the corner, it’s once again time for our (fifth) annual Photoremedy Image of the Year contest. We call it an ‘image’ contest because each of the finalists are either 1) a photograph, or 2) a photography-based digital art image. The list if heavily influenced by a few of the areas where I’ve been fortunate enough to visit this year- Louisiana, Arizona’s Verde Valley, and the Seattle area.

2014 Image of the Year Finalists

2014 Image of the Year Finalists

As always, we are offering what we like to refer to–tongue in cheek–as a Chicago-style approach to voting.  This means you can vote early and often. If you love a finalist, follow the poll’s progress and don’t be afraid to share it with your friends. Better yet, don’t hesitate to come back to register extra votes for good measure. Because multiple votes are allowed by individuals, this is more of a passion poll than a scientific sample. Last year’s contest drew more than 3,000 votes – essentially tripling the previous record of around 1,000.

The 2016 poll is featured at the bottom of this post. Click on an individual image below to view images, captions, and locations in slide show mode.

As mentioned above, the 2015 images include traditional photographs and some that feature significant digital art enhancements. Like many, I enjoy both forms of artistic expression. All of these pieces were captured and developed while pursuing photoremedy–or photography-based healing art–as a means of coping with my ongoing chronic pain struggles and failed back issues. For more information about photoremedy, please click on the ‘Background and Initial Post’ tab (near the top of this page) for our working ‘photoremedy’ definition. Our poll follows – please select the image that you feel is worthy of being crowned Photoremedy Image of the Year. The contest closes at midnight MST, New Year’s Eve.

 

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Louisiana Thingamabobs and Baton Rouge

Our long and winding Louisiana photoremedy tour–featuring photos collected during a short January trip to Cajun and Creole Country–winds down today with a quick look at the Baton Rouge area and with a hodgepodge collection of items that I affectionately call “thingamabobs.”thingamabob 3j

Baton Rouge, located on the Mississippi River in central Louisiana, is a college town full of bright colors, rich history, cool trees, and deep religious roots. I was able to capture a bit of this during our all-too-short trip through the city.

Corsair II Jet at the Louisiana Memorial Plaza

Corsair II Jet at the Louisiana Memorial Plaza

LSU Christ the King Church

LSU Christ the King Church

Our final collection for the Louisiana series features many of the colorful and interesting items–I affectionately call thingamabobs–captured when I zoomed in and took a closer look at items most people generally walk by without noticing. I’m not sure I’m using thingamabobs correctly, but it was how Mary and I referred to these items as we traveled along. We primarily used the word when I coaxed Mary into looking at photos on my Canon viewfinder. At this point, I’d say something like, “Hey, check out this thingamabob!” In this case, the focus of my thingamabob search was door-related items that, in a small–but significant–way, represented the color and culture of their communities.

thingamabob 5jI love “looking for thingamabobs-style photoremedy” because it always serves as a reminder of my belief that God does not overlook the little details that make each person, creation, and place special. How many potential thingamabobs can you find in the photo below?

Oak Alley Plantation - Vacherie, Louisiana

Oak Alley Plantation – Vacherie, Louisiana

We hope you enjoyed a few tales of our photoremedy Louisiana pursuits – Mary and I were thrilled to experience the bright colors, fiery spices, historic places, unique people, and unbridled fun so often featured in the Pelican State.

Note: photoremedy.me is published as a labor of love. Please feel free to share the site, or any of our posts, with others. Our Home Page always features an option for our readers to sign up to immediately receive new material as an email. We hope you will become a part of our photoremedy network. 

The Glorious Garden District

If the eclectic French Quarter is New Orleans’ bass trombone, the Garden District–it seems to me–is the sensual master’s breath that sweetly fuels the one of a kind tone that effortlessly flows from the “T-bone.”

During our January Louisiana trip, we made our Big Easy hub a “period perfect” boutique hotel at the edge of the Garden District. We took numerous casual strolls where we enjoyed a sui generis neighborhood coffee shop, fine cajun and creole dining, interesting architecture, and remarkable historic homes. It was an awesome leisurely adventure that provided just the right amount of photoremedy. The Garden District was, arguably, a perfect base for our trip; intermittent showers even added to the extraordinary atmosphere we enjoyed there.

As an added bonus, most of the Garden District lodging is near the iconic New Orleans streetcars that offer easy access to destinations in the Garden and University Districts, as well as to Downtown New Orleans and the French Quarter.


Downtown and the Quarter are must see–and experience–areas in New Orleans. I’ll be pursuing photoremedy and offering additional details about these areas in my next post. Cheers!

New Orleans

New Orleans

 

Louisiana 101

I must admit I’ve struggled in putting together Photoremedy post number 101. Why? Because Louisiana is one of the most colorful and genuinely unique places Mary and I have visited. We delighted in the enchanting aroma of history and spice found as we pursued photoremedy in eclectic places from low-key Jeanerette to the authentic New Orleans Garden District to the celebrated French Quarter.

Volumes can be–and have been–written about the cultural gems of Louisiana. I found, however, that the place that most etched an enduring mark was the one that left me grasping to find the right words: the renowned Oak Alley plantation.

Oak Alley Plantation -

Oak Alley Plantation – Vacherie, LA

Ironically it wasn’t the beautiful people, lush vegetation or much-photographed Oak Alley Big House that took my breath away. It was the direct manner in which the attraction addressed the overwhelmingly somber aspect of its history – slavery.

This blog is intentionally more about photography than words. Nevertheless, I struggled in identifying the photos I took that best describe how this exhibit seemed to painfully sandblast my heart, while leaving me strangely satisfied. In the final analysis, this unusual mix of emotions was based on the relief of sensing that plantation attractions like Oak Alley have joined those of us wanting to guarantee that such an appalling part of history is never repeated (at home or abroad).

Get In The Game

The last month has featured a generous supply of photoremedy opportunities for me, and they came in  a couple of my favorite categories – kids and travel.Sacred Oils 1j (1 of 1)

I almost opted out of the first photo opp–the baptism of our lovable grandson, Daniel–due to unrelenting back pain. I am, however, quite thankful that Andrew (Daniel’s Dad) wouldn’t let me sit on the sidelines. He basically told me, “Bring your camera and get in the game.” Taking and developing the photos briefly took my mind off the pain, which is what photoremedy is all about. It just took Andrew to remind me. Plus, what’s not to love about being front and center for such a blessed sacrament for such a special little dude?

Partially aided by $29 one way January flights on Frontier Airlines, my back problems quieted down enough for Mary and I to take a leisurely tour of places we wanted to experience in Louisiana. It will take awhile for me to develop all of the photos as I’m struggling to spend much time at the computer at one time and I have another back “procedure” schedule for February. But, here’s a sample of what’s coming up here on photoremedy.

Note: photoremedy.me is published as a labor of love. Please feel free to share the site, or any of our posts, with others. Our Home Page always features an option for our readers to sign up to immediately receive new material as an email. We hope you will become a part of our photoremedy network.