As some of you splendid readers might recall, the end of December is the most photoful time of the year around the Global Worldwide Headquarters, thanks in no small part to the annual Dance of the Shutterbugs in the New York Times.
The Year in Pictures 2021 appeared in Sunday’s edition, so we dutifully embarked upon our traditional bakeoff to see which photographers scored the most shots in the special section.
Previous bakeoff winner Doug Mills racked up three entries in the first half of the year, including these Joe Biden moments in the Capital.
Newcomer Jim Huylebroek filed not from the Capital, but from Kabul.
Jim Huylebroeck had lived in Kabul for seven years. The takeover by the Taliban was the story of a lifetime. There was no way he was leaving.
“There were rumors that Kabul would fall. The police and military started laying down their weapons. The president had fled. We went to the west of Kabul where the Taliban were pushing in, and when we arrived there were crowds of people lining the streets, cheering them on. Seeing that kind of support in the capital was just really something. We jumped back in the car with our driver and then we saw this Humvee, which is an icon of the war. It is America. And there is the Taliban sitting on top. I’m like, “Stop the car, I need to get this frame.” I jump in front of this Humvee, which is stuck in traffic like everyone else. I shoot a photo. By this time, I had gotten the confidence that it was OK, that the Taliban wanted Western journalists to continue doing their jobs.”
The double-shot roll includes Ashley Gilbertson, Meredith Kohut, Erin Springer, Victor J. Blue, and Max Whittaker.
Beyond that, the section features 41 one-hit wonders.
Altogether, a photorific year for the Grey Lady.