Immediately, this photo essay makes me nostalgic for Nintendo's Mario Kart and those rainbow stars that make you the flashy, fast It guy of the race. While the reality of these rainbows is that they were short-lived, this series draws you into an infinite world where each rainbow can last forever. Dashing their way over hills, looping around trees, and leaving their glowing remnants, these rainbows are what happens when you mix colorful lights, long exposure, and a dash of creativity. Artist Daniel Mercadante gives us a taste of what our landscapes would look like if rainbows were within a hand’s reach.
—Neah Gray, photo intern, BuzzFeed News
While the suburbs are typically depicted as if people were living on the set of The Stepford Wives, Eli Durst strips back the romanticism of this American dream and presents to us photos closer to reality. His aesthetic is also spot-on, especially when he chooses to shoot in soft light to really capture the mood of the city fringes. It’s not always spick-and-span perfect in suburbia, but to those who live in it, it’s their own perfect little bubble.
—Anna Mendoza, photo editor, BuzzFeed Australia
Some of the most exciting advances in photography have evolved from its practicality as an empirical tool of science (see the Hubble Space Telescope and Eadweard Muybridge's motion studies.) In this case, the medium found itself at the bottom of the ocean floor and the forefront of marine biology. Here, Atlas Obscura recounts the fascinating history of underwater photography and shares a selection of the dark and eerie pictures that broke new ground in both science and art.
—Gabriel H. Sanchez, photo essay editor, BuzzFeed News
This is not a photo essay per se, but offers a great perspective on what it’s like being stuck in limbo. The Texas border is catching a lot of attention right now over the current immigration policies, but Tijuana has been built upon the castoffs of multiculturalism — with people who have been deported making a life there, and lawyers and shelters offering what they can for those stranded. The eerie sense of bureaucratic transience seeps into this story, as people pass through but few roots take hold.
—Kate Bubacz, deputy photo director, BuzzFeed News
Given the American obsession with youth, it's no surprise that older generations — especially older women — have felt completely sidelined, but this fascinating New York Times article highlights a growing trend of Instagram influencers who are over 60. These women, such as Sarah Jane Adams, who was photographed by Amurri Lauren, are bold, confident, and beautiful; command large audiences of younger followers; and are stark reminders that with age comes wisdom. These women have something to say and don't plan on giving up the stage to someone younger anytime soon.
—Laura Geiser, photo editor, BuzzFeed News
There was something so magical in those “first days of the internet,” and this series by photographer Chris Bethell, of people with their first avatar, embodies that magic. The avatars represent a time on the net when it was acceptable to present oneself in the form of an anthropomorphic elephant or cartoon character to engage in some gaming, have conversations with people across the world, and most importantly escape IRL bullying. Today's internet demands a carefully curated “realism” when it comes to one's digital life, similar to the well-lit, well-photographed portraits in this series, but there's no denying the sweet, simplistic avatars in Bethell's photos represent the best of that bygone era.
You know that feeling you get in your stomach when a roller coaster makes that plunge downhill? A mix of adrenaline, a racing heart, and a view of your inevitable downfall? Well, fasten your seatbelt, because photographer Aydin Buyuktas has taken drone photography to the next level with these topsy-turvy, roller-coaster-esque photographs. These pictures will change the way you think about the landscape around you and how interconnected everything truly is. Try looking at these from a different angle — there's always a different way of experiencing the world.
In a game of soccer, a fan could spend most (if not all) of the 90 minutes waiting for something to happen. It was pretty much what Alan Crowhurst did, photographing spectators watching a match. In a lot of ways, the photographer was living through the experiences of the fans — his subjects — waiting for them to give him some sort of celebratory reaction, and with no assurances that he’d get anything worth capturing. His photography depended so much on the fans’ reactions, which themselves depended so much on how the fans’ team of choice delivered in the game — it’s all very meta.
In the wake of asylum-seeking families being torn apart at the United States borders, many of us are troubled by the distant, yet very real question: What if that was me? Photographer Mahtab Hussain, who was born and raised in Britain, but is of Pakistani decent, has pondered the same. In a beautiful photographic journey back to Pakistan, Mahtab explores these questions through his lens and reminds us that life, and our identities, is not always what it seems.