Tag Archives: National Geographic Magazine

Winners On Every Level

For a word-based medium, we still can get across quite a lot using only pictures.

I only mention this because I’ve finally found the time to let all you dudes in on some amazing photographs.

It’s no secret that National Geographic Magazine has long been the place to go when you want to see stunning, thought-provoking and just plain knock-your-socks-off photographs.

And that’s just in the plain, everyday issue. Imagine what you’d get when you specifically sent out a call for the best photographs of the year.

Well, really, imagine no longer. They’re here. The winners of the National Geographic Traveler photo contest for 2013. And they are astounding.

The Eastern screech owl is a master of disguise. . .

The Eastern screech owl.
The Eastern screech owl.

(sorry, had to repress a shudder at using those words. That movie. . . That’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back and, yes, I’m still bitter.)

Anyway. The Eastern screech owl can blend into a lot of backgrounds. Like, for instance, this tree. Seriously, this is not only an amazing bird, but a beautiful photograph.

Photographer Graham McGeorge took this photograph in Georgia’s Okefenokee Swamp. The fact that he was able to see it at all, much less snap this amazing photo just blows my mind.

Moving on to nature of a more unbridled form. And, by unbridled, I mean furious and destructive. Not on purpose, you understand. That’s just what nature’s raw, unbridled fury does. It destroys stuff.

In this case, what it destroyed was my mind. Metaphorically speaking, of course.

Thunderstorm at False Kiva
Thunderstorm at False Kiva

Photographer Max Seigal went out to False Kiva in Utah, looking for one thing, but found something completely different. I hiked out to these ruins at night hoping to photograph them with the Milky Way, but instead a thunderstorm rolled through, creating this dramatic image. 

Just beautiful. I love the way the photograph combines two very different things: The static remains of a human-built structure, now fallen to ruin, highlighted against the power and majesty of a fast-moving thunderstorm.

And these two weren’t even the winners. That’s right, these gorgeous photos didn’t even place first in the contest.

No, that honor goes to a more people-centric photograph. That honor goes to photographer Wagner Araujo, with the picture titled Brazil Aquathon.

Brazil Aquathon
Brazil Aquathon

I was in Manaus, Amazonas, during the Brazilian Aquathlon (swimming and running) championship. I photographed it from the water and my lens got completely wet, but there was so much energy in these boys that I just didn’t worry about that. 

That’s some of the good stuff, no question.

Still, there’s tons of photographs I didn’t have space to show you, dudes. You should definitely head over to the site and check them out. You’ll be glad you did.

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More Google-Eyed Gazing, Of A More Earth-Bound Nature

It’s picture time again, dudes.

This time, though, I’d like to thank the fine folks at National Geographic for the beautiful eye candy we’re about to start drooling over. I’ve loved National Geographic magazine for a long, long time and it wasn’t just for the pictures of the naked tribeswomen that sometimes ran between the covers.

Yes, I know it’s a cliché, but they only get like that because they’re true. Hey, they didn’t have the internet or VHS tapes when I was a young dude. We had to make do.

Anyway. Back to the topic of discussion.

It’s National Geographic. For decades, the magazine has been the place to go if you wanted to see awesome photography. And that hasn’t changed. Just check some of these.

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Gorgeous, isn’t it? It’s a stunning photograph of a climber named Cory Richards. He and his fellow climbers made their way through winds strong enough to be classed as a hurricane and shivered through temps as low as -50°F just to reach the summit of Gasherbrum II.

It’s only one of the many spectacular photographs that are on the National Geographic website and are part of a series of photos called The New Age of Exploration.

Basically, the contention of this photo series is that mankind has been bred to see what is over the horizon, what’s around the next bend, and what’s at the top of the highest mountain. We just can’t help ourselves. It’s who we are.

And, to prove it, National Geographic went out and collected some of the most amazing photos from around the world to document our love of exploration. Of course there are photographs from the various moon landings and pictures of the Earth as seen from Mars, but there is so much more.

The wonderful thing about this is that it gives us a chance to see just how amazing and beautiful our home really is. We constantly are surrounded by astonishing beauty, vistas to blind the unwary eye, and all sorts of stupefyingly outrageous things on both the micro and macro scale.

NGS Picture ID:1159467

National Geographic goes everywhere. I got the picture to the left from a gallery of Exploring the Deepest Recesses of the Planet. That’s Fangtooth, a fish found deep in the ocean, 6,500 feet deep in the ocean. That’s a long, long way down.

So if you’ve got a few minutes, why not head over to the National Geographic site and just flip through. I guarantee you will find something to astonish you, something you will just have to share.

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And The Winner Is. . .

Every year about this time, I start looking forward to hearing the news that I know is coming.

Pretty soon, I always think, the National Geographic will announce the winner of its annual photography contest, showcasing what are, to my mind, the best photographs of the natural world for the previous year.

Well, the good news for you dudes is, you don’t have to wait. The winners are here and they are phenomenal!

Seriously, I take a look at some of these photos and can’t believe they haven’t been doctored in some way. The overall winner is simply a masterpiece of composition and timing. Seriously, take a look at the winning photo.

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It’s amazingly, wonderfully, stunningly great. Beautiful.

Here’s what the photographer had to say about the shot: Grand-Prize Winner: The Explosion! The subject’s name is Busaba, a well cared for Indochinese Tigress whose home is at Khao Kheow Open Zoo, Thailand. I had taken many portraits of Busaba previously and it was becoming more and more difficult to come up with an image that appeared any different to the others. Which is why I took to observing her more carefully during my visits in the hope of capturing something of a behavioral shot. The opportunity finally presented itself while watching Busaba enjoying her private pool then shaking herself dry. In all humility I have to say that Mother Nature smiled favorably on me that day! (© Ashley Vincent/National Geographic Photo Contest)

There also are some stunning photos documenting the lives of people very different from you and me. Overall, it’s a marvelous trip through some different cultures, to some amazing locations and into the lives of some astonishing animals.

Here. Take a look at this fox. See if you can guess what it’s doing before you read the next paragraph. s_n10_redfoxca

See what I mean? Can you guess? Here’s the answer: Honorable Mention, Nature: Red Fox catching mouse under snow – With his exceptional hearing a red fox has targeted a mouse hidden under 2 feet of crusted snow. Springing high in the air he breaks through the crusted spring snow with his nose and his body is completely vertical as he grabs the mouse under the snow. In Squaw Creek, Park Country, Wyoming.(© Micheal Eastman/National Geographic Photo Contest)

How cool is that?

The link is here. I would send you to the National Geographic magazine website, but I’m having a little trouble with it at the moment. This link is to The Atlantic, which has a very nice gallery of all 14 photos. Go and visit. I know you’ll have a great time

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