|At times it's hard to remember. The clutter of preparation tends to obscure. A multitude of distractions overwhelmlast-minute phone calls with belated suggestions, messengers stalking you with one final portfolio delivery, stacks of tearsheets and postcards, lost recommendations, caffeine cravings, names scribbled on a scattered landscape of Post-it notes. Photographythe reason you're laboring in the first placebecomes a distant formality.
Then, like a superhero with a camera, the Shannon Taggarts of the world come along to save you. Her jump-roping, pool-playing nuns invigorate your recently entangled brain. You're amazed by the magic of Tony Law, turning decaying dictionaries into spectacles of texture, by the power of Christopher Coppola, using innocent dolls to convey intricate human relationships, by the skill of Sang An, breathing colorful, kaleidoscopic life into inanimate objects. They dissolve the swell of diversions, leaving you, simply, with the allure of images.
The photographers exhibited on the following pages were chosen from an enormous amount of portfolios sent in from around the world-a number that astounds us each year when we begin creating this issue. But while the task of selecting 30 photographers to represent our choices as the image-makers of the future becomes more daunting each year, the challenge always comes down to the same dilemma: Which photographs make you take notice? Which images force you to pause-to gaze at a page-arresting your eyes for moments on end? For us, these 30 accomplished that feat. They made us stare. They let us wonder.
So this year we ask you to take a moment from your hectic schedule to admire the power of these new photographers. Read their stories, admire their resolve, but most of all, take a moment and revel in their images.
Anthony LaSala, Section Editor