'More than ever, photography has become the predominant means for us to communicate. An absolutely astounding number of pictures are shared every single day — half a billion, and rising. And yet somehow, even amid this colossal torrent of imagery, the best pictures rise to the top'. - TIME
John Tlumacki. Boston, Mass., USA. April 15, 2013
'The first Boston Marathon bomb exploded about two hours and forty minutes after the winner of the men’s race had crossed the finish line on Boylston Street. I was standing on the finish line photographing runners. I photographed Kevin Corcoran from Lowell using his belt to stop the flow of blood from his wife Celeste’s mangled leg. I photographed Celeste’s daughter, Sydney, lying on the ground as two men wrapped t-shirts on her legs. Nicole Gross from Charlotte, North Carolina, struggled to get up, her shirt in tatters, her leg severely injured. A pool of blood surrounded her. A police officer reached over and placed two fingers on Krystal Campbell's neck, looking for a pulse. Krystal had passed away. Celeste lost both legs. Sydney lost nearly all her blood from a cellphone-size piece of shrapnel that lodged in her thigh and severed her femoral artery. I continued taking photos for about 12 minutes. Then I got my laptop, which was still plugged in near the finish line, and walked to my car and drove to the Globe office. I took off my shoes, which were covered with blood, and began to edit my photos. On bad nights, the images still play over and over in my mind'.
Taslima Akhter. Savar Dhaka, Bangladesh. April 24, 2013
'April 24, 2013, still remains fresh in my memory. Around 2 AM among the many dead bodies inside the collapse at Rana Plaza, I found a couple at the back of the building, embracing each other in the rubble. The lower parts of their bodies were stuck under the concrete. A drop of blood from the man’s eye ran like a tear. Since then, this couple remains firmly in my heart.I keep asking myself whether the dreams of these people do not matter at all. Are they not worthy of our attention because they are the cheapest labor in the world? I have received many letters from different corners of the world, expressing solidarity with the workers. Those letters inspired me so much, while this incident raised questions about my responsibility as a photographer. My photography is my protest'.
Tim Holmes. Dunalley, Australia. Jan. 4, 2013
''On the January 4, 2013, a bush fire swept through our small coastal township of Dunalley in Southern Tasmania. My wife and I and our five grandchildren took refuge in the sea bordering our property as massive columns of fire consumed everything in their path. The fire burned right down to the water’s edge and the jetty itself caught on fire, but we were able to put it out. We spent two and half hours under the jetty and I took the photograph with my wife’s iPhone to send by text message to our daughter so that she could see that we were all together. Our lives were spared but houses and all possessions were lost'.
Daniel Etter. Istanbul, Turkey. June 1, 2013
'The scale of the protests took me by surprise. Living near Istanbul's Taksim Square, I am used to seeing demonstrations. On one of the barricades I saw this guy waving the Turkish flag, collapsing from the tear gas and retreating when it was too much too take. Even though I wore a gas mask, I had problems breathing. He did that a few times without any protection. I followed him for a while and took this frame. The photo went viral within minutes after I posted it on Facebook and a Turkish friend shared it. Within hours 10,000 people posted it, made it their profile picture and appropriated it. It appeared on t-shirts and posters and, oddly, was turned into a monument in Turkey's third biggest city, Izmir'.
David Jenkins. Seal Island, South Africa. July 26, 2013
'I have been traveling to Seal Island off the coast of South Africa for 5 or 6 years now to photograph the interaction between the great white sharks and their prey, the cape fur seal. I tracked with the seal in my viewfinder and, without warning, a great white attacked. The shark had its mouth wide open and the seal managed to just avoid the bite. It was sent flying out of the water by the nose of the shark. As the seal was falling back towards the water it narrowly missed the mouth of the shark. For the next couple of minutes the seal stayed close to the shark's body but away from the mouth, using its agility to tire out the shark. When the shark gave up, the seal managed to make its way back to the island safely'.
Tyler Hicks. Nairobi, Kenya. Sept. 21, 2013
'It was clear that something catastrophic was developing when I arrived at Nairobi’s upscale Westgate Mall. Gunfire had been reported, and I witnessed hundreds of victims streaming out of the building, many of them shot and bloodied. I realized this was the attack people had warned about since I moved here two years ago. Al Shabab militants were waging a violent attack on a crowded target frequented by foreigners'.
Peter van Agtmael. Humble, Texas, USA. June 12, 2013
'I took this picture of Bobby Henline at a Motel 6 a few miles away from the Houston airport. Earlier that day he'd met the father of Rodney McCandless, a 19-year-old who died in the same humvee explosion in Iraq that injured him'.
Mosa'ab Elshamy. Cairo, Egypt. July 27, 2013
'I rushed to Rabaa Adaweya square shortly after midnight on July 27th after hearing that security forces were attacking Morsi supporters who had been camped there for two months. Throughout the night I would alternate between the front-line, the makeshift hospital and a room where dead were kept, documenting a level of brute violence and horror I hadn't witnessed until that night. Twelve hours later, I put the camera away as I got exhausted and headed back home. On my way out I heard screams and noticed a large group of people. Two men carried a dead young man who had very recently been shot in the head. The man (on the right) was in a state of shock. Unaware that the man he carried was dead, he pleaded for a medic or an ambulance and screamed for God's mercy. I quickly got the camera out and took this photo. It was the last picture I took on that horrific day, but it remains the most memorable'.
Philippe Lopez, Tolosa, Leyte, The Philippines. Nov. 18, 2013
'It’s very stormy at this time of year in the Philippines. Clouds gathered in front of the setting sun while along the road residents lit fires to burn the debris left by the typhoon. Momentarily, the devastated landscape took on a strange beauty, and it was just then that this group of women and children appeared on the road. I think people gravitate towards this picture not only because it is visually strong and emotional, but also because, in a way, it draws on some viewers' own faith'.
Emin Özmen. Keferghan, Syria. Aug. 31, 2013
'I took this picture on August 31 in Keferghan, a town near Aleppo, in northern Syria. It was the fourth and last execution of the day committed by Al Qaeda-linked ISIS militias. All the people who witnessed the executions seemed relieved. I was not even sure of what kind of a picture I was taking. I tried hard not to put my camera down. I only tried to record the events through my camera. I had to document what I saw, one way or another. This is a war, and I was in the middle of an unbearable moment'.