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  • 32 HQ Photos Of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way

    The Wild Atlantic Way, the world’s longest coastal driving route, stretches over 1500 miles of Ireland’s west coast. There’s plenty to do along the way, with 159 “Discovery Points” marked along the route. Western Ireland is also home to some of the best whale watching in the world. But more than anything, the best part of the drive is the endless awe-inspiring vistas the country has to offer. For more info and other great photos, check out the Wild Atlantic Way on Facebook.

  • Photographing Life From High Up In The Air [15 HQ Photos]

    Pilot and aerial photographer Alex MacLean travels the world, capturing photos from high up in his Flight Design CT two-seater. Trained as an architect, MacLean has a knack for recognizing patterns that are all but invisible to those of us stuck on terra firma. His work has been exhibited all over North America, Europe, and Asia and appears in countless private, public, and university collections. For more of incredible photographs, visit Alex MacLean Aerial Photographer.

  • Smithsonian Photo Contest Finalists Announced [25 HQ Photos]

    The photo editors at Smithsonian have announced the finalists for their 11th Annual Photo Contest. Over 50,000 submissions were whittled down to just 60 finalists. 10 photos were chosen for the following categories: Natural, Travel, People, Americana, Altered, and Mobile. We chose 25 of our favorites to showcase below, but you can view the other finalists and vote for your favorites at Smithsonian.

  • The Mercury 7: America’s First Astronauts [22 HQ Photos]

    On April 9, 1959, NASA announced the original seven men chosen to be astronauts for the manned spaceflights of the Mercury program. Dubbed the Mercury 7, the group was made up of Alan Shepard, Gus Grissom, John Glenn, Scott Carpenter, Wally Schirra, Gordon Cooper, and Deke Slayton. NASA originally planned for an open competition to find its first astronauts, but President Eisenhower, ever a stick in the mud, insisted that they all be test pilots. Due to the size of the Mercury capsule, candidates could be no taller than 5’11″ and weigh less than 180 pounds. Other requirements were age under 40, a bachelor’s degree, and at least 1500 hours of flying time. More than 500 initially applied, and after rounds of testing, both physical and mental, the group was whittled down to 18. The final 7 were chosen because of their genius-level IQs and their ability to function both as a team and solo. Between them, the 7 flew on all classes of manned NASA spacecraft from the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, and Space Shuttle programs. With the exception, of Gus Grissom, who was tragically killed in the 1967 Apollo 1 fire, they all lived long lives well into retirement more »

  • Incredible Macro Photography Of Coral [20 HQ Photos]

    Not only is Daniel Stoupin a PhD student at the University of Queensland reseaerching marine biology, he also happens to be a avid nature photographer and videographer. His science background led to and interest in macro photography and the revelation of the diverse and complex life we miss out on with the naked eye. For this collection, corals were illuminated with a full-spectrum lamp to bring out fluorescent colors not visible under white light. For more photos form this series and other amazing collections, check out Daniel Stoupin’s Microworlds Photography.

  • These Soviet Bus Stops Almost Make You Wish You Took The Bus. Almost. [25 HQ Photos]

    New York-based photographer Chris Herwig first took notice of these Soviet-era bus stops on a cycling trip in 2002. He challenged himself to take one good photo every hour and the bus stops were often the only break in monotony for long stretches in countries like Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Russia. Over the next 12 years, Herwig found himself traveling amongst the former Soviet Republics in order to capture as many bus stops as he could find. He often found himself being questioned and accused of being a spy in many of the nations where freedom of expression is still a foreign notion. With his travels complete, Herwig compiled his photos into a 128-page book that he started a Kickstarter campaign for to cover print costs. The campaign isn’t even over yet and he has already sold all of the pre-orders. Maybe it’s time we catch up to the Soviets and make some awesome bus stops in America. In New York all you get is a bench with a half-eaten gyro leaking tzatziki sauce all over the place and a questionable puddle emitting stink from below. 

  • Abandoned Salt Mine Becomes An Amusement Park [16 HQ Photos]

    An abandoned salt mine from 1932 has been transformed into a historical site and amusement park in Romania. Salina Turda in Turda, Transylvania, Romania was used as a salt mine beginning in 1075 until it was abandoned in 1932. After 60 years, the site reopened as a historical venue, with much of the old equipment intact, along with an amusement park. Now visitors can learn about salt mines and also go for a ride on a ferris wheel, play some mini golf, basketball, or football, or visit an underground lake. Salina Turda is also well known as a halotherapy spot, with its salt air believed to offer health benefits. It sort of looks like a Mars mine from the original Total Recall. Get your ass to Romania.

  • Holi: The Festival Of Colors [24 HQ Photos]

    Holi, the Hindu Festival of Colors, is celebrated all over the world this week. Holi is an annual springtime celebration observed on the last full moon of the lunar month. Bright-colored powders are thrown by participants at friends and strangers alike to celebrate Krishna’s pranks and the arrival of spring and the vibrant colors associated with the season. The following photos are from Holi festivities all across India. If you come across Holi festivities in your neck of the woods, don’t get mad if you get hit with powder. Instead celebrate the moment and enjoy yourself, knowing that spring is here. After this winter, we all deserve a little break.

  • The Sleaze Of Old Times Square [30 HQ Photos]

    When artist Mitch O’Connell was trying to make it big in his late teens, he would travel to New York City with his illustrations and wander the city, taking photographs. In those days, the most exciting place was 42nd Street, home to peep shows, porno theaters, and adult book stores. And a Howard Johnson’s! Apparently, in the days of wine and roses that were late 80s/early 90s Times Square, you could get a peep show for just a quarter! You’re lucky if you can get a gumball for a quarter these days. Sure, Times Square is a lot safer now, but at what cost? This is just a small sample of Mitch’s photos. Check out the rest and his great illustrations at the Mitch O’Connell Blog.  

  • The 1950s Nanny Who Was A Secret Street Photographer [32 HQ Photos]

    In 2009, John Maloof purchased a collection of negatives at a furniture and antiques auction in Chicago for $380. He soon found that he had purchased thousands of photographs taken in cities all over the world. He was amazed at the talent and set out to learn about the photographer. He found her name, Vivian Maier, written on a photo-lab envelope. A search of the name came up with a recent obituary where he learned she had lived in Chicago and worked as a nanny. Maloof came to learn that Vivian Maier’s photography was a secret she kept from everyone who knew her, including her employers and even close friends. In the years since the initial discovery, Maloof has turned Vivian Maier into a celebrated photographer, with gallery shows, an online portfolio, and a documentary to be released this month. The photos below are all of New York in the 1950s and 60s, but photos from Chicago, Canada, Florida, India, and Europe can be found at Vivian Maier. Find out when the documentary, “Finding Vivian Meier,” is coming to your city here.

  • The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly From The Geneva Motor Show [32 HQ Photos]

    Each year in March, the International Geneva Motor Show is held at the Geneva Palexpo convention center. Since the first show in 1905, Geneva has been the show for automobile manufacturers to unveil their most ambitious concepts. Although exotic supercars usually get the most attention, the latest technological breakthroughs are also met with great fanfare. More so than other shows, automobile manufacturers worldwide consider the Geneva Motor Show a level playing field because the hosting nation, Switzerland, has no auto industry of its own. We’ve shared some of our favorites form the show below, whether it’s because we want to drive them or because they look so insanely ridiculous. The Volkswagen Giugiaro Clipper Concept is our current favorite. Which one do you want to take for a spin?

  • Niagara Falls Has Completely Frozen Over [13 HQ Photos]

    This Polar Vortex has gone too far. With low temperatures gripping the East Coast Niagara Falls has frozen over. It happens nearly every year and believe it or not the Weather Channel says it was legal to walk across the falls on the ice bridge that formed until 1912. We’ve all heard the stories of tourists riding down the falls in wooden barrels in the early 1900s. But did you know that in the past when the falls were frozen, visitors were allowed to walk across the falls on the “ice bridge” created by extreme cold, according to Gizmodo? This dangerous activity was banned after three tourists died when the ice cracked on February 4, 1912. We went through the internet archives and found a few incredible pictures of the falls frozen over. 

  • Portraits Of Convicts With Letters To Younger Selves [10 HQ Photos]

    For “The Reflection Project,” photographer Trent Bell captured portraits of inmates in the Maine prison system with handwritten letters from each inmate to his younger self in the background. When these people get locked away for so long, it’s so easy to have an attitude of “out of sight, out of mind,” but the reality is that they are real people living their lives behind bars because of a mistake. The idea for the powerful project came to Bell after a friend, a professional with a wife and 4 children, was sentenced to 36 years. We’ve all had moments where things could have taken a wrong turn, and this series serves as a reminder that it’s possible for any of us to find ourselves in these circumstances. For more info and other projects, check out Trent Bell Photography.

  • Ernest Hemingway’s Estate Is One Of America’s Finest Landmarks [39 HQ Photos]

    It was on the advice of John Dos Passos, a fellow member of the “Lost Generation” of ex patriate artists and writers populating Paris during the 1920s, that Ernest Hemingway was first prompted to visit Key West. Hemingway did not go directly to South Florida from Paris, but rather arrived through Havana, Cuba—a city and country that would prove to be critically important in Hemingway’s later personal and professional life.

  • 1940s America In Color: 30 HQ Photos From The Office Of War Information

    Between 1939 and 1944, around 1600 color photographs were collected by the U.S. Government’s farm Security Administration and Office of War Information. The pictures focused on rural areas and farm labor around the nation, including Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, along with World War II mobilization. The following photos focus on factory workers during that period.

  • Poland’s Creepy Skull Chapel [13 HQ Photos]

    From the outside of the Skull Chapel, or Kaplica Czaszek, in the Polish village of Czerma, you would just think it to be a run of the mill place of worship for the townspeople. But then you enter and see the skulls of 3,000 people on the walls of the small church. Then you’d go into the basement and find another 21,000 skeletons. The remains are those of people who died in the Thirty Years’ War, three Silesian Wars, and from various cholera epidemics in the 18th century. It is the only monument of its kind in Poland and one of only three in all of Europe.

  • Ride A Real Life “Tron” Bike, The Lotus C-01 [8 HQ Photos]

    Originally announced last year, Lotus recently revealed that the C-01 hyperbike is ready for production. Designed by Daniel Simon, the man behind the Bugatti Veyron, the C-01 is 400 pounds of sleek carbon fiber, aerotech steel, and titanium. The unique bike is built to be light and strong, having more in common with a formula 1 car than with most other bikes. Only 100 units will be produced, but that should be plenty for the few people who can actually afford it. The C-01 will retail for a hefty $137,450 plus taxes, which, for the same amount, could get you 4 Ducati 1199 Panigale R superbikes. Or a small house is many places.

  • First Time In 20 years: Great Lakes 88% Frozen [3 HQ Photos]

    NASA satellite images are showing that the Great Lakes are now 88% frozen, something not seen since 1994. The winter average since 1973 is just over 50% coverage, with 80% only reached 5 times. 2002 saw the lowest coverage on record, with just 9.5%. The first image is a natural color photo of the Great Lakes region with a false-color image following to differentiate between ice (pale blue), open water (navy), snow (blue-green), and clouds (white).  The final image is a natural color photo showing the shipping lane carved by ice breakers. Although it may not seem like it, the ice is positive for the region, with an increased water supply and good news for shipping and recreational uses. That is, if it ever thaws.

  • Historic London Paintings Superimposed Over Contemporary Photos [10 HQ Photos]

    Redditor “shystone” took paintings of London in the 18th and 19th centuries and placed them in contemporary photos of the same locations as seen from Google Street View, resulting in an interesting mash-up of old and new. What’s most incredible is the seamless way in which a number of the images flow, with many of the structures from the 200 or so year old paintings still standing today.

  • A Celebration Of Classic Movie Theaters [12 HQ Photos]

    New York-based photographer and cinematographer Franck Bohbot set out to capture the magic of old Hollywood with his series “Cinema.” Bohbot visited the most amazing, ornate theaters in California and photographed them during off hours when they were completely vacant. The theaters are often seen as simply a delivery system for the art of film while they’re own artistic merit is overlooked. This is just a small sample of the full series, available along with other great works, at Franck Bohbot’s Portfolio.

  • Documenting Murals Of President Obama [17 HQ Photos]

    New York City based photographer Camilo Vergara has been documenting murals since the 1970s, focusing on the exterior walls of liquor stores and convenience stores in some of the poorest communities across the US. In 2009, he began noticing more and more murals devoted to President Obama appearing in such places and collected photographs of the murals over the years for his current project. Although there appears to be little interaction between the locals and the murals, Vergara believes that the fact that the murals are intact and not even the oldest among them has been tagged illustrates the appreciation and respect the communities have with the artwork. 

  • Floods Devastate United Kingdom [32 HQ Photos]

    The United Kingdom has been hit with the wettest winter in at least 250 years. A month’s worth of rainfall is expected in just the next couple days. 56,000 homes across England and Wales are currently without power, down from 168,000 overnight, after experiencing winds in excess of 100 miles per hour. Rivers throughout southern England are at their highest recorded levels. To aid the flooded areas, 13 high-capacity pumps, with many more expected, have been brought to the Somerset Levels from the Netherlands to funnel floodwaters out to the sea.

  • Photo of the Day: Spectacular Fresh Impact Crater On Mars

    A dramatic, fresh impact crater dominates this image taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on Nov. 19, 2013. Researchers used HiRISE to examine this site because the orbiter’s Context Camera had revealed a change in appearance here between observations in July 2010 and May 2012, bracketing the formation of the crater between those observations.

  • 45 Photos That Will Make You Want To Visit Yosemite National Park

    Yosemite National Park photo via photographer Wasim Muklashy, view more of his incredible work here. Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National Park photo via Shutterstock Yosemite National more »

  • Insiders Look At The Eruption of Mount Sinabung [18 HQ Photos]

    Indonesia’s Mount Sinabung volcano erupted and killed more than a dozen people on the western island of Sumatra on Saturday, the first time it is known to have claimed any lives, a senior government official said. A giant cloud of hot volcanic ash clouds engulfed villages in Karo district during the eruption and a photographer was in town capturing it all. WARNING: several of these photos are graphic.

  • Ice Storms Cripple The South [20 HQ Photos]

    Earlier this week Atlanta was essentially crippled following a severe ice storm that turned roads and airports into sheets of ice. The city, which is unaccustomed to this type of weather, was not able to handle the ice and drivers crashed into ditches and abandoned vehicles littered the highways which led to miles-long traffic jams for many hours. The Atlantic In Focus pulled together a photo set that shows how bad things really was.

  • 25 Photos Of 60 Bunnies Celebrating Playboy’s 60th Anniversary

    Playboy, everyone’s favorite gentleman’s magazine (they really do have good articles), celebrated their 60th anniversary by gathering 60 Playboy bunnies and going on a bus tour around Los Angeles earlier this month. I’d be happy enough to celebrate my 60th birthday with one 60-year-old bunny. Now they just need to bring the bus to the east coast. The gals can stay at the RSVLTS offices. Heff, you’re on your own.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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