The end of an eventful year 2020 – a year unlike any other with a deadly epidemic, political turmoil, ethnic debates and record bushfires – is the perfect time to spread National GeographicFirst public release in pictures ever.
Rather than just reporting on the most impressive events of the past year, our January issue shows how we tested this year, put us in isolation, gave us a voice – and even brought us hope. Our photographers talk about our collective yearning for security, the importance of capturing these times of social turmoil, and the unexpected discoveries they make during isolation at home.
(Photography is a way to make sense of this unforgettable year)
Said Whitney Johnson, vice president of Optics and Immersive Experiences National Geographic Tell stories differently this year. Where our photo editors usually send photographers around the world to report on crises and conflicts, we asked them this year to document how these stories were expressed in their own environment. This approach allowed us to publish more photographers, each with their own unique perspective on the world around them.
Admittedly, in a horrific year like this it was hard to find sparks of hope. Yet many of the images show the resilience of the human psyche and the power of scientific discoveries – from protesters who gathered in Washington, D.C., forcing the nation to address age-old grievances of the wise ways families found ways to interact. In times of solitude.
“These images give us a shared sense of community,” said Cathy Moran, Deputy Director of Photography. “We are isolated, but through this visual expression of the way we lived this year, we can share those moments. We feel that isolation and this hope, and we feel stronger. This is the gift of photography: it connects us in a completely different way.”
These are 10 of the many unforgettable photos of the year