Great photographs aren't made often.

Great photographs aren't made often.

While we always strive to make interesting pictures out of ordinary events, special photographs -- the ones that stick with you long after the assignment has ended -- are rare occurrences.

We know the feeling right before something amazing happens: Our pulse quickens, our hand steadies and our eyes focus. The shutter clicks and if we're lucky, we've captured something timeless.

These are our best photographs of the year, but they are your stories, and we thank you for letting us capture them.

- Joshua A. Bickel, chief photographer