Creative Loafing photography at its best is a combination of fine art and photojournalism. Our goal is not only to record facts, but also to capture personality and spirit and express emotion. Our annual Year in Photos cover story is always both the most fun and the most difficult issue for me to edit. The photography staff must choose 18 pictures from the thousands it has shot over the last 12 months. Each photographer then writes about the story behind his or her selected photos.
The cover photo was taken by then-intern Alyssa Pointer during protests after George Zimmerman was acquitted of the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Pointer remembers the moments leading up to the photograph: "Hundreds joined together at West End Park to voice how they felt about issues of race and the justice system in the United States. Within the crowd were two women passing around megaphones. Patiently waiting with her hand raised was Kimberly Brooks. Brooks seemed quiet so I didn't think her voice would project. But she grabbed both megaphones and spoke about her fears as the mother of a teenage son. ... Growing up with an older brother, I experienced firsthand the fears my mother had for my brother. ... This photo reevaluates the ongoing fears that African-American mothers have for their sons and gives outsiders a glance into their world."
For the Year in Photos, we make our decisions not because certain images represent the biggest stories, but because these are the photographs that feel the closest to our hearts.
— Joeff Davis, Photo Editor