To make pure alcohol, start with a batch of raw ingredients. Distill it, and you’ll get a more refined batch. This is how we compiled this best-of-the-year photo gallery. We started with thousands of images. Gradually we selected the shots that illustrate skiing and photography in new and different ways, along with an explanation from each photographer. Please enjoy responsibly. Then we asked you, our readers, to vote for your favorite image. Introducing the Readers' Choice award for Best Photo of the Year.