Best photos of the year
Best photos of the year
BY SUZANNE KREITER Shaw’s supermarket, Dorchester, February 7 Last winter, the snow was the story of the day -- every day. There had been some roof collapses, so people were starting to panic. From the building next door I saw the men clearing the snow off the roof. Then I looked down and realized the better picture was on the ground. They were dumping one bucket of snow at a time in the the parking lot, making a giant snow mountain. I squatted on that cold, wet pavement for an incomfortably long time to get the right moment. The picture wouldn't work without the tiny man, to put in perspective how oddly enormous the pile was.
BY DINA RUDICK Oak Knoll Street, Arlington, July 10 I’m a gardener, so I’m prejudiced toward situations where people are working with dirt. It’s hard to photograph because their heads are down, and it’s hard to get a sense of personality when someone is busy working at a task; you have to get low so you can see what they’re doing. What I was drawn to here was the light. The sun was overhead, there were beautiful colors, the orange of the marigolds. I tried to create an image that had some layers and softness to it. I think it’s beautiful when people care for tiny patches of earth for years and years and find meaning in that.
BY BARRY CHIN Financial District, Boston, December 8 Occupy Boston had been given a midnight deadline [to vacate Dewey Square]. Everyone was expecting a police confrontation, activity had picked up, the crowd had swelled. The statue of Gandhi is the iconic symbol they’ve adopted; it was donated from The Peace Abbey in Sherborn. They were initially thinking of getting it out so it wouldn’t be broken or confiscated. All of a sudden, the guy got the call: “Gandhi is staying!” They started carrying him through the crowd; people were cheering. I knew, wow, there’s the picture. It was reminiscent of protests all over the world.
BY YOON S. BYUN Logan Airport, Boston, July 25 This was for a story on the 10th anniversary of September 11th. We had special access to photograph at the airport. That flag was put up at the gate at Terminal B where Flight 11 flew from, to commemorate the people who perished. An American Airlines pilot told us about it; we walked over and photographed it. It’s not a very compelling thing to look at, so I was trying to find the best way to evoke some mood. It’s static and straightforward; it had a somber feel. You don’t see any airplanes on the runway, to invoke that feeling of loss.
BY JESSEY DEARING Oak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard, August 28 We were covering Hurricane Irene. It’s hard to shoot a hurricane; it’s hard to photograph wind. We had driven around the island and came to the ocean. There were a lot of onlookers looking at the waves like an amusement attraction. The winds were strong; it was difficult to hear. I felt something close to me, flapping in my peripheral vision. Richard [Tarter] had come out of nowhere and started flying the flag. Immediately, I wanted to photograph it. There’s not going to be something more visual than that. He’d done the same thing in Hurricane Bob. He said, “During troubled times, you can always count on the flag.”
BY YOON S. BYUN Memorial Drive, Cambridge, July 4 This took no effort on my part; it was just a funny situation. The woman in the back is one of the parents. You can see she thought it was funny. These teenage girls were from New Jersey; they had driven up with a group to see the fireworks. You have to come out early, and people wait there for a while. I wasn’t sure if they were sleeping when I walked up, because two of them were wearing sunglasses. I was probably 5 feet away. They just never woke up.
BY DINA RUDICK Near General Morales, Ecuador, February 25 Last February, there was a double murder in Brockton. The reporter [Maria Sacchetti] and I followed the bodies [of a mother and her 2-year-old son] to be repatriated. The family invited us to the wake, held in a small room that smelled like formaldehyde and bodies. In this moment, they just opened the lid of the coffin, and the daughter looked in at the brother she’s never seen. The wake went on all weekend, around the clock. Things we might think were traumatic – being around your mother’s dead body for days – didn’t seem out of the ordinary. This little girl was immersed in it. It was a different approach to death than anything I’ve experienced.
BY JIM DAVIS TD Garden, Boston, June 6 It was the Stanley Cup finals at the Boston Garden. I was shooting from our sixth-floor position. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw [Nathan Horton] lying on the ice and turned and got the shot. I’m no doctor, but the way his arm was positioned, it looked serious. In retrospect, it was a turning point in the series. I remember thinking of that picture after [the Bruins] won game seven in Vancouver, and getting a picture of him with the Cup. He didn’t play, but it was nice to see he was healthy enough to make it out there.
BY BARRY CHIN Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, Boston, August 20 This wasn’t your typical sporting event; it was something unusual to see. I definitely wanted to include people watching, not just the diver. I thought an observation window [at the Institute of Contemporary Art] would be a great view from a different angle. The most difficult thing was the timing. When you shoot sports, you can see where the ball is and anticipate. Here, you couldn’t see when they were jumping off the roof. All of a sudden, you would see someone fall. My first several attempts were misses. After a while you got a sense – they would throw a towel off the platform to judge the wind and seconds later jump.
BY PAT GREENHOUSE District Court, Dorchester, January 10 I shoot a lot in court; one challenging part is someone in custody will try to hide from the camera. Sometimes lawyers appear to facilitate their hiding; these aren’t trying that. One of [the defendants] had allegedly pointed a loaded assault rifle at a Boston police officer, so there was a police presence – officers flanked the courtroom. They were led in for the arraignment. They were aware of the cameras; that’s why they’re hiding their faces, but they didn’t do a good job. Whether they hide or don’t, it’s a public proceeding. My job is to get the picture.
BY BILL GREENE Falmouth, January 20 I was on assignment on the Cape. I noticed this one guy skating on this brackish pond. He was doing laps up and down, by himself. The thing that struck me was the graphic nature of the cattails in the foreground, silhouetted against the white ice. I liked the layering of the land, sea, land. Some things are just aesthetically pleasing. I shot through the reeds at ice level and didn’t like what I got, so I drove up on the road. As I was leaving, I found the spot where I could get the long shot; I realized this is the photo.
BY DAVID L. RYAN Harvard University, Cambridge, October 19 There’s a fountain with a stone base near the Science Center. The water is actually shot up, so it appears to be going up, and then the rain was coming down. Some umbrellas were black, some green. I spent 30 minutes there. I don’t care about me getting wet, but if it’s really pouring, you need to keep your camera covered or it wipes out the picture. But the big kicker was the color of the umbrella. That one ended up being the clicker; it was the only one I turned in.
BY JOANNE RATHE Malden Senior Community Center, February 16 It was a Zumba class. There were maybe a dozen seniors, really hard-core, who come all the time. It’s a tough class; the teacher wasn’t giving them any breaks. They were trying to get me to do it, but I’m a little uncoordinated. I followed this guy – he had such great movement and passion, I definitely kept my camera on him. I was squatting down, trying to get a moment when his foot is up off the floor. The low angle helps accentuate his feet. It’s nice when body language can tell a story.
BY ESSDRAS M SUAREZ Foxborough, May 31 There’s a hit picture book, Go the F**k to Sleep, for frustrated parents in despair when their children won’t go to sleep for hours. In this family, there’s a bedtime ritual that takes two hours. I got there at 6:30 p.m. to document the process. The visuals just got better when the superhero pajamas came out. I love his body language, his hands on his hips, a universal “I am defiant.” Around 8, I finally had to leave for another assignment; I never got to see him go to sleep.