Ross Hamilton feels his annual photography calendar is a celebration of where we live.
“The whole idea is to enjoy the beauty of what’s ours on the peninsula,” he said.
“It’s an extraordinary place and we have an extremely loyal population.”
In its 15th year, Hamilton’s “Olympic Peninsula” calendar makes its way to local retailers’ shelves and through his website rosshamiltonphotography .com.
For 2019, Hamilton and his team, including his wife Kathy, friend Sandy Frankfurth and designer Ruth Marcus put together another assortment of his photography archives showing off the best of Sequim and the peninsula.
Next year’s calendar features some local sites, including the Dungeness Railroad Bridge under snow for December.
“We try to give a variety in and around (the Olympic National Park) and the (Dungeness-Sequim area) because it is so incredibly beautiful,” he said.
“I am very determined to show the best. I don’t want to show mediocre stuff. It has to come to my standard.”
Hamilton continues to create the product with help despite beginning to lose his vision in 2000; his blindness now is nearly total, he and wife Kathy note, with ability to only see light.
As he and others prepare for the calendar, Hamilton said they go through his large archive of scans of transparencies.
“What we try to do is reflect the season,” he said. “We don’t show pictures of rhododendron flowers in November. Months dictate what’s in the calendar.”
With nature scenery, Hamilton said what he’s snapped remained preserved over the years.
“A forest is a forest and lakes are still lakes,” he said. “I don’t include anything that would date (the calendar). God created it. I just copied it.”
Setting up background
Hamilton follows a history of his family living in Sequim starting with his great-grandfather William Hamilton settling in the area in the 1880s. He grew up in Burbank, Calif., and had his first exposure to cameras from his parents at age 9. After college, Hamilton followed his parents to Sequim in 1969 where he worked in retail and began building a name for himself in photography on the side. It wasn’t until the mid-1990s when he became a full-time photographer, he previously said.
Making a calendar came as a suggestion from local businessman Bill Littlejohn, but Hamilton resisted at first saying he was scared of the investment
“After December, nobody wants to look at it,” Hamilton said.
However, he tried it once and sold out his first print run, and has continued doing it ever since.
With his vision worsening, his support team has taken on more, including proofers that look for typos.
One year, he said the calendar accidentally omitted a day in June and added it in November.
“It’s a hometown effort and we do try to do our best,” he said.
“We just smile after it comes out. After 15 years, we’re getting used to what to look for.”
Frankfurth also adds poignant quotes and facts for each scene.
The calendar measures 12.5 inches by 24 inches, and is available at www.rosshamiltonphotography.com and at several local retailers.
Editor Michael Dashiell contributed to this story.