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11 Incredible Photo Stories You Absolutely Can’t Miss

Here are the most interesting and powerful photo stories from across the web.

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1. "Photos of Evolutionary Wonders" — Washington Post

Robert Clark / Courtesy of Phaidon

"This series is a beautiful reminder that no matter how terrible the news is, the world is larger and more magical than we can conceive. The photos show quirks of evolution and the remnants of some of the species that didn’t make it — a nice reminder that at the end of the day we are just a small part of history." —Kate Bubacz, senior photo editor, BuzzFeed News

Joost Vanderberg
Sha Ribeiro

For many of the young people featured in this essay, this past presidential election was the first time they were legally allowed to vote. As their words insinuate, coming of age under the Obama administration certainly instilled a level of hope and optimism to their anticipation of the 2016 presidential election. But what happens when these new voters find itself on the losing end of American politics? Here, through a collection of stunning photography and interviews, we catch a glimpse of the anxieties and concerns on the minds of a new generation of Americans.” —Gabriel H. Sanchez, photo essay editor, BuzzFeed News

3. "The Magic of Wintertime in Finnish Lapland" — Feature Shoot

Tiina Törmänen

"I am from the South. I hate winter. But I cannot deny how magical the season looks so long as you don't live in a city where it becomes sludge. These ethereal photographs capture a place so surreal, it's almost hard to believe it exists on this planet. The sky is clear and full of color and bright stars; the ground is covered in soft virgin snow. I feel chilly just looking at these, but that could also be because I don't have heat in my little city apartment. Regardless, if you feel pessimistic about winter, check out these photos." —Sarah Kobos, photo editor, BuzzFeed

4. "House of Dior: 70 Years of Christian Dior Collections" — The Guardian

Loomis Dean / Time Life Pictures / Getty Images

Looking back at 70 years of Christian Dior, many of these dresses appear just as elegant and striking as they did decades ago. To celebrate an upcoming retrospective of the Christian Dior fashion house at the National Gallery of Victoria, The Guardian has put together an a visual timeline of their collections through the ages. While the peripherals of these pictures change, the haute couture remains timeless in its beauty and design.” —GHS

Thomas Prior
Thomas Prior

"For his new book, Bomba, photographer Thomas Prior captured these stunning images of men celebrating in their own unique and perilous way. During this annual tradition in San Juan de la Vega, a small town 170 miles north of Mexico City, locals pack sledgehammers with explosives, which are detonated by slamming them on the ground. While the tradition occurs during the festival of St. John the Baptist, the practice itself is (ostensibly) the re-enactment of the 17th-century battle between Juan Aquino de la Vega — who is considered to be “Mexico’s Robin Hood" — and the local dons. Though as Atlas Obscura points out, “which side possessed the original hammer bombs is forever lost in the smoky hazy of history." —Ben King, deputy design director, BuzzFeed News

6. "They Are Slaughtering Us Like Animals" — New York Times

Daniel Berehulak

"I had five people send me this link immediately after it published, all awed by the surreal, tragic scenes of the drug war in the Philippines captured by Daniel Berehulak. The emotional exhaustion of living in a city seemingly at war with itself comes through in the taut captions provided by Berehulak, and makes the new policies of Duterte seem all the more cruel. " —KB

7. "2016 Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar" — The Atlantic

NASA / ESA / Hubble Team / Reuters

"In the race to the new year, it can be easy to lose sight of the big picture. The Atlantic’s NASA Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar can serve as a remedy for that condition. Each day from Dec. 1 until Dec. 25, a new image from the telescope will be added to the page. The images are awe-inspiring captures of galaxies far beyond our own, and included are interesting facts about each of the star systems. It can really help put things into perspective for those who are feeling the strain of the season…and unlike a typical Advent calendar filled with chocolates, there’s no regret in enjoying them all." —Laura Geiser, photo editor, BuzzFeed News

8. "The Ongoing Cost of the Chernobyl Disaster" — Feature Shoot

Pierpaolo Mittica

"Pierpaolo Mittica is one of those rare few photojournalists who’s made Chernobyl’s deadly exclusion zone the center of his life’s work. In a way, his own photographic journey mirrors the realities that the town is experiencing, from disaster and abandonment to slow but steady regeneration." —Anna Mendoza, photo editor, BuzzFeed Australia

9. "LIFE Magazine Photographer Captured Life at Pearl Harbor a Year Before the Attack" — New York Daily News

Carl Mydans / The LIFE Picture Collection / Getty Images

The Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor transformed the naval port into a solemn reminder of American sacrifice and patriotism. It’s almost impossible to hear that name without visualizing the billows of black smoke rising from twisted beams of steel and flame. But in this remarkable essay, first published by Life magazine in 1940, Pearl Harbor is shown one year before the attacks in all of its glory and prime. It’s a fascinating collection of images that provides little-known context to America’s collective memory of that day.” —GHS

10. "Mohammed Badra Is TIME’s Pick for Wire Photographer of 2016" — Time

Mohammed Badra

"Most of the world's news photos come from wire photographers, who are sent out to cover the news when it happens, as it happens, to relay to journalists the world over. The bravery and commitment of Mohammed Badra in Syria cannot be overstated, and his work is well-represented on Time Lightbox, which recognized him as the best photographer of the year." —KB

11. "Christmas Tree Farming in Scotland" — The Guardian

Graeme Robertson / The Guardian

"It’s the festive season for many people around the world. But for some, that time of year is all year round. Graeme Robertson takes us to the very heart of the holiday spirit, a Christmas tree farm — because while we may not think much of it, there’s actually a lot of science that goes into growing them." —AM

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