I’ve always been intrigued by tattoos (very tempted to get one myself, don’t know why it hasn’t happened). I understand their powers of self-expression and celebration of good design. But the pursuit of full-body tattoos — where there are more tattoos showing than natural skin — has not appealed to me, but fascinates me. Lauren Sarazen explores the universal love of tattoos in her feature on Lens Culture, illustrated by Ralf Mitsch’s beautiful portraits of tattoo fans showing off their body art in unflinching portraits.
There’s a certain raw sexuality that analog photography is capable of conveying like no other medium. A new book titled Polarized, by photographer Richard Kern, brings together his provocative and highly sexual Polaroids, spanning the 1980s to the early 2000s. These pictures are as elegant as they explicit, conveying an entire spectrum of beauty and emotion. FYI, this one is totally NSFW, so go home, kiddies.
—Gabriel H. Sanchez, photo essay editor, BuzzFeed News
Motown blew the music industry wide open with its sound: blending gospel and blues into catchy songs you couldn't help but play again and again. As the civil rights movement progressed and anti-Vietnam protests continued, many lent their voices to the cause to help turn the tide. This photo essay is a great look at some of Motown's most influential artists performing during the golden years of the label, before they could imagine how their sound would change the history of music, the industry, and America itself. If you're new to some of these artists, do yourself a favor and set up a playlist this weekend.