What We Liked

August 18th, 2017

Here are our editors’ favorite Instagram posts from our photographers this week.

Photo by Andy Mann
"There are moments on this wild and wonderful planet that live with you forever. Power, beauty, fear, grace and excitement are all ingredients in humble stew: my favorite dish. A polar bear in Southeast Greenland shows me a close moment of curiosity before ducking under and moving on his way."
Photo by Matthieu Paley
"Over the last month, I have prepared to return to the Afghan Pamir. It will be a difficult expedition, on assignment for National Geographic. I said good bye to my family; I am just about to plunge. Many challenges ahead, physical, mental, technical. All to return to a place that has no equal to me. The remoteness that lies ahead is daunting, but I know that when I will be there, I will know why."
Photo by Cristina Mittermeier
"I know it is not 'pet week,' but I want to share a small collection of images of the pets indigenous people keep around the world. This is a baby capybara, the largest member of the rodent family and a delicacy in many countries of South America. I photographed this cutie in a Kayapó village in the Brazilian Amazon. Its mom probably was killed for food, but the village kids were enjoying this playful mammal. Although I hate thinking about its ultimate fate in a place where food is hard to find, during this sunny afternoon, this 'babybara' was a superstar."
Photo by Paul Nicklen
"We did not want to get too close to him. I did not want him using his last ounce of energy in trying to avoid us. It took him a long time and a lot of effort to be able to stand up only to collapse again. We let him be. It was one of the hardest decisions I have faced in a long time. I want the images to be able to tell his story. I want to be able to tell the story of his species. He was once a huge male polar bear and now he is a bag of bones, reduced to skin hanging loosely off of his once massive frame. He will be dead soon and I want him to go in peace after living a life as a great polar nomad. We cannot prove that he is in this condition because of a lack of sea ice, but is it a glimpse into the future as ice reaches its lowest extent in recorded history? I hear a lot of suggestions from people like, 'Let’s take polar bears to Antarctica so they can eat penguins' or 'Let’s put out styrofoam platforms so they can be on the ocean.' These suggestions are irrational, but it does mean that people do care. The only way polar bears can be saved is by reducing our global carbon footprint and finding renewable energy. It breaks my heart to see this, but our team at Sea Legacy is shifting into high gear to continue connecting the world to our ailing marine ecosystems."

Photo of the Week

August 15th, 2017

By Raquel Sosnowski

Scrolling through photos in our database, I pause for a moment, then two, and I absorb the quietude of this image by Michael S. Yamashita. He has transported me from my swiveling desk chair to the gentle rocking of a rowboat. I am listening to the wind and the gentle talk of two men fishing by lantern light. I watch the sun slowly rise over the water and I can feel the steady passage of time as the sun comes up and the men focus on their nets.

The lighting, reflections, and soft colors of this photo all serve to draw me in further. Then, curiosity gets the better of me. I have fished all of my life, but I have never seen anyone fish in this manner. Intrigued, I want to know more about this traditional way of fishing.

The privilege of spending my days scrolling through beautiful photography and sharing it with others is not lost on me. I hope that this image will inspire others to learn more about the cultures that inhabit our planet. Let it leave even the faintest imprint in the back of your mind. We are all human.

Browse more images available for licensing by Michael Yamashita here.

What We Liked

August 11th, 2017

Here are our editors’ favorite Instagram posts from our photographers this week.

Photo by Robert Clark
"One of my favorites, the Old English sheepdog (OES) is a large breed of dog which was developed in England from early herding types of dog. The Old English sheepdog can grow a very long coat, with fur covering the face and eyes. Obsolete names of the breed include Shepherd's Dog and bob-tailed sheep-dog. It is still nicknamed Bob-tail (or Bobtail) because historically, the tail was traditionally docked in this breed."
Photo by Michael Yamashita
"How to beat the heat in the Mekong Delta."
Photo by Peter Mather
"Two of my favorite things- canoes and the Yukon. Get out on the water this summer....it makes the heart happy."
Photo by Ira Block
"Thai monks walk through a morning fog during a pilgrimage to Lumbini, Nepal. Lumbini is the birthplace of the Buddha."

Photo of the Week

August 8th, 2017

By Sylvia Bors

When you think of Antelope Valley, a field of grazing horned mammals may come to mind. In reality, the location is a poppy reserve in the Mojave Desert that comes to life in the spring with wildflowers and wildlife. In this image taken by Gerd Ludwig another surprise awaits, all the better to enjoy the view with. Ludwig has a way of seeing things beyond the first perspective. He has a disposition behind his lens that sometimes deeply delves into subjects not that easy on the eye. He poses society issues with a Ludwig bent. The recliner is quirky and makes an awesome landscape, but also tables the topic of waste and dumping abuse or simply an artist statement of taking in the view in your own way.

Babak Tafreshi Captures Solar Eclipses

August 7th, 2017

On August 21st the moon casts a shadow on Earth, racing across the US (only), through 14 states, from Oregon to South Carolina, the first total solar eclipse visible across the country in a century. Nicknamed the Great American Eclipse, the totality lasts about 2 minutes and brings millions to the 70-mile wide shadow path. The partial eclipse is visible from all north and central America (and Hawaii at sunrise). But it’s nothing like totality.

Eclipses are addictive! National Geographic Creative photographer Babak Tafreshi has been chasing and documenting a dozen of solar eclipses in all 7 continents, since he saw his first one in 1995. Often regarded as the most spectacular natural phenomenon, each total solar eclipse has its own character, beauty, and wonder.

Browse more images of solar eclipses by Babak Tafreshi available for licensing here.

What We Liked

August 4th, 2017

Here are our editors’ favorite Instagram posts from our photographers this week.

Photo by Thomas Peschak
"Marine scientists from the Charles Darwin Foundation and Save Our Seas Foundation explore a underwater cave at Wolf island, one of the most northerly outposts of the Galápagos Islands. Sea turtles, sea lions and even hammerhead sharks have been encountered inside."
Photo by Erlend Haarberg
"Arabesque of wetland—aerial photograph of string bogs in the Muddus National Park, Sweden."

Photo by David Guttenfelder 
"A car with fancy rims passes through Palo Alto, California."

Photo by Beverly Joubert
"The mass of life that drives the Serengeti and Maasai Mara ecosystems. It's difficult to convey the enormity of the wildebeest migration, but an aerial view can give a good indication."

Photo of the Week

August 1st, 2017

By Stacy Gold

My eye is immediately drawn to the center of this frame where happiness and personal connection emote with laughter and light. The family and friends that surround this mother allow my eyes to complete a visual circle around the image and take in the entire scene. This environmental portrait evokes a joyful and intimate feeling. It gives a sense of community and togetherness.

Matthieu Paley embarked on a year-long journey with his family. They traveled to several countries and partook in many cultural traditions along the way. This wedding scene took place in the Gilgit-Baltistan territory of Pakistan. Paley has a raw talent for immersing himself in a culture. He gains trust and captures wonderful, raw moments. He clearly has an eye for connective moments in time and documenting unique lifestyles.

Henry David Thoreau said, “True friendship can afford true knowledge. It does not depend on darkness and ignorance.”

See more images by photographer Matthieu Paley available for licensing here.


What We Liked

July 28th, 2017

Here are our editors’ favorite Instagram posts from our photographers this week.

Photo by Anand Varma 
"A Cuban bee hummingbird perched on a penny to show scale. This male weighed roughly 1.8 grams. In comparison, that penny weighed about 2.5 grams. That makes this species the smallest bird in the world! However, a couple species of woodstars (also hummingbirds) in South America come very close. The penny was supported by a tiny wire, which I hid by cropping the image tightly. I trained it to perch here in front of a piece of white plexiglass inside a flight cage. Dr. Chris Clark from University of California, Riverside uses the flight cage to study the courtship display of this species. This male was released unharmed after being measured and photographed."

Photo by Ami Vitale
"Imagine the magic inside. Day three of National Geographic Expeditions photo workshop in Prague. Working with twenty-one amazing kiddos and three phenomenal photogs who are making it all possible."
Photo by Thomas Peschak
"After two hours of grazing on algae in the cold waters of the western Galápagos, this marine iguana is dangerously close to becoming too cold to fight waves and currents. The animal needs to reach the shore quickly so it can reheat its body using the sun's warmth radiating from the black lava rock."
Photo by Ashima Narain
"The boy just before his first birthday. Now my children are ages one, two and three! It sounds like a joke, but believe me it isn't!"

Photo of the Week

July 25th, 2017

By Nadia Hughes

Sri Lanka was not a country on my radar before I saw this image, as well as the rest of Ami Vitale’s coverage of this small and often-overlooked island nation. This image drew me into the long and complicated history of the country with its many different traditions and faiths. Vitale captured a moment of colorful celebration that is not only fun, but intriguing. What is this nun doing? Is this during a festival? What is behind the blue gate? I want to find out more about it, and about the fascinating island of Sri Lanka.

Browse more images of Sri Lanka by Ami Vitale available for licensing here.

What We Liked

July 21st, 2017

Here are our editors’ favorite Instagram posts from our photographers this week.

Photo by Michael Yamashita
"Sunset over the Whitney, New York City: red glass cubes, part of artist Larry Bell's fifth-floor installation for the 2017 Whitney Biennial, is a study in refection and transparency."
Photo by Tim Laman
"Great blue heron at Walden Pond photographed at dusk during an early fall snowstorm. One of my favorite shots from my Walden Pond Project due to the atmosphere created by the long exposure, blurred snowflakes and blue light of near darkness."
Photo by Pete McBride
"Maps will need to be redrawn. One of the largest icebergs in history, seven times the size of New York City, calved off from Antarctica today according to scientists, showing the troubling and shocking signs of our rapidly changing climate and warming poles. Years ago I spent weeks exploring this frozen world for National Geographic and was humbled and amazed at the warming world we witnessed - from rain to melted sea ice and crashing icebergs."
Photo by Jordi Busque
"A village with its lights turned off. Without light pollution, your town would look like that."