I’m not a football person outside of Friday Night Lights reruns but I still found this photo essay captivating. Jesse Reiser is thoughtful in examining the real dangers of the game as well as highlighting the glories. The combination of nostalgia and competitive fervor is intoxicating, making the sport feel epic and fragile all at once.
—Kate Bubacz, deputy photo director, BuzzFeed News
This incredible New York Times photo essay from Sen. John McCain's memorials weaves poignant images with videos from the multiday event to form a touching tribute worthy of a man who so ardently served his country from service member to senator. Photographer Tom Brenner's hauntingly beautiful opening image honestly captures the reverence Sen. McCain will continue to garner from service members and citizens alike.
—Laura Geiser, photo editor, BuzzFeed News
These pictures, made in the aftermath of a powerful 6.7 magnitude earthquake that struck Hokkaido, Japan, on Thursday, are a stark reminder of the tremendous power of nature. The disaster has left 9 dead and more than 150 injured, as well as extensive damage across the region and millions of people without power. In pictures like this, to see an entire hillside left devastated in a matter of minutes is at once both awe-inspiring and deeply troubling.
—Gabriel H. Sanchez, photo essay editor, BuzzFeed News
Every year when Labor Day rolls around, it's always good to be reminded of the many people and movements that have helped shape our modern-day workplace. One such shift is the focus of this piece. Where words weren't enough, Lewis Hine grabbed people's attention by telling the story through photography. And by dedicating his work to exposing the harrowing reality of child labor in a time when the medium wasn't as widespread, Hine showed what photography can do for social change.
—Anna Mendoza, photo editor, BuzzFeed Australia
Photographer Sebastian Sardi's series Black Diamond documents the men, women, and children in Jharkhand, India, who risk their lives to mine coal amid underground fires and toxic, gas-filled air. Sardi's portraits treat each subject with the utmost dignity. Standing stoutly atop a pile of rocks, arms crossed in a defiant pose, or intently holding the viewer's gaze, these people clearly don't want the viewers’ pity but instead demand their respect. Is coal worth more than our humanity?
The fact that war wounds are sometimes invisible is turned literal in this stunning and shocking photo essay by Camillo Pasquarelli. The photographer examines the long-term traumatic effects of pellet guns, a so-called nonlethal method of crowd control used by the police in Kashmir that has rendered protesters and passersby blind. Even more horrific, the pellets often must stay within the human body as there is often no safe or reasonable way to remove hundreds of tiny shards. Using X-rays and portraiture to great effect, Pasquarelli calls for the viewer to examine the level of harm unseen by the naked eye.
To see centuries of history reduced to ashes is devastating, to say the least. The National Museum in Rio de Janeiro is not only Brazil's crown jewel of historic preservation, but this 200-year-old museum is one of the largest in the Americas with some 20 million objects dating as far back as the Early Cretaceous period. While some of these items were recovered safely before being lost to the inferno, it is sadly estimated that 90% of the museum's holdings have been lost.
With travel being more accessible to a lot of people these days, this piece from the Guardian is a reminder of how some cities are bearing the weight. On the one hand, it can be argued that Barcelona did too good a job in promoting itself as a destination, especially in a region that's already got established tourism giants like Paris and London. But as a visitor of a major tourist hub, you wonder whether your experience of the place is authentic or not, or better yet, what even is authentic.
These panoramas highlight lively street life in New York in direct contrast to the stagnating storefront market. Todd Heisler’s eye for color and juxtaposition allows subtle details to pop and the images to feel timeless and vibrant, succeeding in catching the various moods of the city’s neighborhoods.
Here are the most moving and breathtaking pictures from the past week.