Taylor Davidson · 13 from 2013

Thirteen photos from 2013 to summarize the year.
by Taylor Davidson · 31 Dec 2013

Looking back at 2013, and inspired by Mark Lobo, here’s thirteen photos that summarize my year.

Above is a moment from Unsilent Night, which I first experienced in 2011. One of my favorite photos of the year, it’s also an example of taking advantage of the moment, getting out the door, and getting the shot, even in the most uncomfortable situations.

In Paris we found the love locks on Pont des Arts, initialed and locked to the bridge as romantic gestures for largely tourist couples. But we found them in numerous places around the world, in Italy, Germany, New York, and even Pittsburgh.

In January we went to DLD in Munich, and also took a morning to visit Dachau Concentration Camp on a bleak, cold winter day. A sad, moving experience.

My renewed focus on photography in 2013 manifested itself in a couple ways, from shooting CGI and other events, to shooting a year-long series that I’ll release early next year, to going to more museum exhibits, to writing a couple meaningful pieces about the past and future of photography in The Filter Future, From Photogram to Instagram, and to creating the Photography Industry Landscape.

Early in 2013 I co-curated a book called Creative Entrepreneurship that we self-published through kbs+ Ventures. While I still don’t consider myself an author, the book was a significant part of my year and led to a variety of opportunities and experiences. Downloaded by nearly 10,000 people, hearing people’s stories about reading the book, seeing others read it at coffee shops and subways, and giving it to friends were tremendously fulfilling to me.

On the subject of career, this year we also invested in five companies, were featured in AdAge for our Ventures Fellows education program, and created the Intent Marketing Landscape. In addition, I published the results of a feedback survey of entrepreneurs, something that I’m proud of for many reasons. I take a lot of meetings and take it very seriously, attempting to make sure I make good use of my time and the people I meet. In 2014, I’m going to continue to do the surveys, and will update the survey results periodically throughout the year.

Throughout the spring, summer and fall we spent numerous weekends exploring the Hudson Valley, the Catskills, Vermont, Massachusetts, and more, hiking, cycling, B&Bing, and hopping from new town to new hike and beyond.

Another thing we discovered this summer was the beaches outside NYC, and took the train to Long Beach and Robert Moses to find surprisingly good beach experiences. It’s amazing what you can find in and around New York when you walk out the door with the spirit of adventure.

In 2013 I did my first 50 mile cycle ride, and did my first real distance rides through Vermont, NJ and NY. I also cycled around Manhattan, an interesting and varied 32 mile ride. Next year’s goal is a 100 miler.

In August we took off for our Italy Moon, and drove, read, ate, relaxed, walked, photographed, and people-watched across Italy, my first real trip through the country.

This year, I think I finally came to recognize my style. A portfolio review from a year ago had a profound impact on how I thought about shooting, and this year, I feel I finally came to apply it. Peace amid chaos, quiet moments, using people as props to the image rather than the subject matter, order, and yet a little disruption. Looking throughout my photos from the year, my most appealing images (and most of the ones here) demonstrate some consistency around that style.

One of the most interesting days this year came from a trip to the Channel Islands, a place most people don’t know exist, the only national park only accessible by boat, to a place that has its own ecosystem due to its isolation from the mainland. And visiting it on a day that was questionable if we’d even be allowed on the island made it an even more unique experience.

Although I only went to New Orleans twice this year, it was in my mind throughout the year. The spirit of adventure and possibility and uniqueness of New Orleans is something that we carry with us wherever we are, whatever we’re doing. Ever since we created NOLAlicious, friends have always asked us what to do when they visit New Orleans, and this year, I consolidated and updated my recommendations for New Orleans.

And of course, amid the loss of my best friend, we also adopted a puppy, who has brought us such tremendous joy. Here’s to helping show her a new world in 2014.