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9 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. "The 46 Most Powerful Photos Of 2016" — BuzzFeed

Lucas Jackson / Reuters

"How to summarize an entire year into a single, comprehensive photo essay is one of the most challenging and most fun assignments for an editor. 2016 was unrelenting — the number of historic milestones and the number of tragedies threatening to overwhelm. BuzzFeed News Photo Essay Editor Gabriel Sanchez edited several hundred photos down to the top 200 and then he and I whittled the selection down to 46. The final edit is the result of more art than science as we considered the importance of events, moments, artistic style, and the balance of the overall tone of the selection. To his credit, Gabriel resisted my tendency to focus deeply on hard news and tragedy, and I relented on a wider edit given the range of magnitude of the year. We hope you enjoy!" —Kate Bubacz, senior photo editor, BuzzFeed News

2. "Reindeer Herding In Russia's Arctic" — Reuters

Sergei Karpukhin / Reuters

"Look, this is not 100% in true holiday spirit. To the rest of the world, reindeers are cute, red-nosed creatures that prance across our skies and sprinkle magical dust. But in the Arctic regions like Nenets, Russia, these guys are commodities. Sergei Karpukhin’s well-photographed story shows us the real side of the reindeer industry." —Anna Mendoza, photo editor, BuzzFeed Australia

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3. "The Best Sports Photography Of 2016" — BuzzFeed

Cameron Spencer / Getty Images

"There’s a special relationship between sports photographers and their subjects. On one end, the raw athletic intensity of professional athletes, many of whom are seen performing above and beyond what many had thought was humanly possible. On the other end, the photographer, whose calculated anticipation of the athlete’s every move is able to capture the exact moment of action in perfect composition. Here, BuzzFeed rounds up the year’s most remarkable sports photography — a feat both on the field and behind the camera lens." —Gabriel H. Sanchez, photo essay editor, BuzzFeed News

4. "Finding India's Lost Musicians" — National Geographic

Souvid Datta / National Geographic

"Fading rural traditions is not exclusive to India. It’s the same problem we see everywhere else where the young leave for the big city for a more lucrative life, and funding doesn’t reach the furthest in society. This National Geographic feature proves how a connection to a culture, albeit remote, can help give light on these fragile traditions, because often, it’s just lack of exposure that’s causing these intangible customs to disappear." —AM

5. "Betty Grable Was Famous For Her Legs. Here’s What She Thought About That" — Time

Walter Sanders / Getty Images

"The movie industry is often panned for its vanity and the five-page spread Life magazine published on Betty Grable in 1943 is the epitome of such criticism. The actress who quite often had to compete with her own legs for attention once again took a backseat. Of the 14 images Life published, only one showed Betty's face. The majority of the images were shot full length but then cropped to highlight only her legs. Here, Time publishes many of the original photos with Grable’s upper body restored. It's an interesting juxtaposition to see the full-length images and then view the original spread. The stark disembodiment feels both insulting and unnecessary." —Laura Geiser, photo editor, BuzzFeed News

6. "Blood And Beehives: Phyllis Posnick's Styling For Vogue" — The Guardian

Irving Penn / Condé Nast

"Science fiction and high fashion have more in common than one might think. At the intersection of both is the anticipation of what comes next and the essential fearlessness of stepping forth into the unimaginable. In this gallery from the new book, Stoppers: Photographs from My Life at Vogue, which chronicles the life’s work of fashion editor Phyllis Posnick, The Guardian reveals that surreal and striking influence that sci-fi offers in the realm of fashion." —GHS

7. "New York Would Never Dream of Building a Wall" — New York Magazine

Platon / New York Magazine

"You usually see Platon’s work covering world leaders, celebrities, and other people of power. It is refreshing to see the same dignity and gravitas applied to people on the other end of the spectrum — those who are living in the shadows in a sanctuary city." —KB

8. "Terrifying Photos Of How Aleppo Has Changed Over The Last Year" — BuzzFeed News

Ameer Alhalbi / AFP / Getty Images

"The defining battle for Aleppo this week has radically altered the terms of the war in Syria, but the conditions on the ground for citizens couldn’t be worse. This roundup serves as a reminder of how much has been lost in the historic city as the world stands by and watches." —KB

9. "A Student Has Created A Gripping And NSFW Photo Series With Trump’s Quotes About Women" — BuzzFeed News

Aria Watson

"It goes without saying that for many of America’s youth, this election cycle has been a traumatizing and belittling experience, to say the least. But rather than allowing these events to get her down, this college-level photography student from Oregon has channeled her anxiety into a poignant photo project that calls attention to the harmful language our president-elect has used toward and about women. The major take away from her interview with BuzzFeed: “Don’t be afraid to speak up about what you are passionate about.” —GHS

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