Two weeks, over 9,000 entries, hundreds of Facebook and Twitter comments later and we’re here to announce the person who will become our next photojournalist. But first we’d like to take a second to thank each and every person that entered their work from around the world. Not only did you knock us off our feet with stunning photography each and everyday, but you also made your voice heard via social media with kind words about our mission. Hundreds of you also sent us amazing emails telling us how inspired you were by Adventure.com and that in return truly inspired us.

So earlier this month, in partnership with 500px — the world’s biggest and best community of photographers, we asked their community what adventure means to them and to submit their best photo(s) tagged with our hashtag #VentureOut. We scoured the entries and it was seriously one of the toughest decisions we had to make. There were just so many outstanding entries. So much talent out there and we were honestly overwhelmed by the response. Over 9,000 photos entered and there could easily be hundreds of winners.

But we were in search of somebody who can help tell our story of adventure and share incredible imagery with you while travelling on assignment for Adventure.com. There could only be one winner. Finally after many reviews, rounds of voting and cups of coffee (and shots of whisky) by our judges, we have a winner:

 

Sunset Conversation

The Definition of Adventure

The definition of adventure is personal to each of us. Each person’s definition is like a fingerprint: no two perspectives quite the same, but all sharing common traits while being uniquely personal. For us, the definition of adventure isn’t any one activity, experience or feat. It’s a state of mind. The spirit of adventure within. It’s this spirit that manifests itself in so many awe-inspiring ways, whether it’s new music, art, sports, food or just living in every sense of the word. And this is how we came to choose “Sunset Conversation” by Mark Gee as our winner. It’s a simple reminder that it’s not all about energy drinks and doing the most extreme things; sometimes adventure is just as simple as plucking yourself out of your normal, everyday routine and reconnecting with nature and each other. Here’s Mark’s description of his winning photo:

“In today’s busy society we often forget about the simple things in life, which are easily overshadowed by our hectic lifestyles. It could be as simple as taking a drive down to the coast, pulling out some chairs, and enjoying a quiet conversation as the sun sets over our diverse landscape. It’s all there for us to enjoy – it’s just a matter of actually enjoying it.” — Mark Gee

Mark Gee is an award winning photographer and digital visual effects artist based in Wellington, New Zealand. He has worked on many high profile and Oscar award winning feature films. His love of the New Zealand landscape is a big part of the inspiration for his photography. You may also know Mark from his wildly popular video ‘Full Moon Silhouettes’, which has been viewed over 250,000 times:

Congratulations to Mark and please be sure to give him a shout out in the comments below as well as on Twitter and Facebook — he deserves it! Be sure to follow along here and on our social media channels as we document Mark’s adventure from planning, going on and writing about his life-changing experience with us. Plus stay tuned to Adventure .com on Twitter and Facebook for updates on future opportunities to work with us and as always you can reach out to us with a cool story idea, amazing photo or video. And now for the incredible runner ups, each amazing in their own right. We look forward to following along with each photographer and hopefully working with some in the future as well:

 

The Runners Up

Photograph * * * by Lukas Furlan on 500px