Black Press Media’s best photos of 2019

See the story behind our most impactful images of the year

This story is part of Black Press Media’s 2019 Year in Review. Celebrate the end of a decade by taking a look back through our top stories by clicking here.

Fires, protests, celebrations – 2019 was a busy year.

Through it all, Black Press Media journalists were in communities big and small, capturing the moments most don’t get the chance to see.

We asked our roughly 250 reporters from across the province to reflect on the year and share their favourite pieces of work – some painful, some jubilant, some inspiring.

Here are our best news photographs, and why the photographer behind the lens felt it was important to share with the world:

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‘Humdinger of a shot’ by Terry Farrell with the Comox Valley Record. “The crispness and detail of the wings is a shot rarely seen. Plenty of hummingbird photos around, but rarely will there be no blur whatsoever.”

‘For the reach’ by Cameron Thomson with the Salmon Arm Observer. “The shape and symmetry of the tennis player’s body always reminds me of a Greek statue. I was ecstatic when I looked through the photos taken at this event and saw this one, it was exactly the shot I wanted to get; a sharp image at the very peak of his serve.”

‘Toronto Raptors are NBA Champs’ by Phil McLachlan for the Fernie Free Press. “An entire country united; on June 13 the Toronto Raptors were named the NBA champions. In a small bar in Fernie, the emotion brought the roof down. Pictured above is the moment before the Raptors won. It served as a momentous night not soon to be forgotten.”

‘Youth climate strike ‘die-in’ by 1,000 people in Nelson’ by Bill Metcalfe with the Nelson Star. “I like it because it’s not every day you see 1,000 lying down in the street.”

‘Kings for a minute’ by Jenna Cocullo with the Northern View. “It tells the story of hockey. And was taken during Hometown Hockey in Prince Rupert.”

‘Head to head’ by Mark Brett with Penticton Western News.

‘Veteran opens up about mental health, stress injuries’ by Phil McLachlan for the Fernie Free Press. “It was an honour to listen to this veteran open up about his struggles with mental health and stress injuries, and encourage others to accept their vulnerabilities and seek help.”

‘Peachfest kicks off with a bang,’ by Mark Brett with Penticton Western News.

‘Fire’ by Thom Barker with Smithers Interior News. “It has action, mood, atmosphere, news value, composition, heroism, and fire.”

‘Close call’ by Jim Bailey with the Trail Daily Times.

‘Open house at North Island College’ by Elena Rardon with the Alberni Valley News.

‘Cold water enthusiasts’ by Tyler Harper with the Nelson Star. “The picture captures a group doing what many would think is an absurd act, but also the orange bridge in the background plus the blues and whites gives the whole shot a soulful tone that I thought was perfect for the story.”

‘Santa of 50 years catches a snooze’ by Sarah Grochowski with the Aldergrove Star.

‘True grit’ by Millar Hill with the 100 Mile Free Press. “It was my first experience attending a rodeo. I had never seen something like it before and I couldn’t believe these men were wrestling these steers.”

‘Gratitude for our veterans’ by Heather Colpitts with the Langley Advance Times.

‘Fabulous-frivolity-of-a-forest-of-flowers’ by Jenna Hauck with the Chilliwack Progress.

‘Saying goodbye’ by Susie Quinn with the Alberni Valley News. “This was the first line of duty death and funeral that Port Alberni experienced in more than a decade, and the first that I ever covered. The emotion these firefighters are holding back as they carry their colleague’s urn of ashes into the Alberni Athletic Hall was gripping to me.”

‘Beyond the chair’ by Liam Harrap with the Revelstoke Review.

‘Firefighters save family portrait from flames’ by Natalia Balcerzak with the Terrace Standard. “I thought it was a remarkable moment in the midst of all the chaos fighting a house fire for firefighters to save the family portrait from being destroyed. The family was expecting a baby as well and they lost everything, so it was very humbling to witness and capture this on camera.”

‘Commemorating Vimy Ridge’ by Jenna Hauck with the Chilliwack Progress. “Bernie McNicholl (left), 93, gets a chuckle out of 94-year-old Werner Hockin following the 102nd commemoration of the battle of Vimy Ridge at All Sappers’ Memorial Park on Tuesday. The two veterans both fought in the Second World War.”

‘Wrestling invitational’ by Elena Rardon with the Alberni Valley News. “All that wresting action, and the Port Alberni athlete has time to peek at the camera while in the middle of his match.”

‘Solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en nation’ by Natalia Balcerzak with the Terrace Standard. “This photo shows a powerful moment of the rally in front of the Terrace RCMP detachment to show solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en nation and protest the police removing First Nations people off their territory when Coastal Gaslink Pipeline arrived to do pre-construction work.”

‘Testing the wind’ by Jill Hayward with the Barriere Star Journal. “It is a unique shot and not easy to get, but it also says just how rural and outdoorsy our area is.”

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