thailand’s annual poi sang long festival, which occurs in the first week of april, celebrates the ordination of ethnic shan boys to the theravada buddhist order. for three days, these sang long, or “jewelled sons,” are dressed in bright colours and adorned in flowers and make up, and then carried on the shoulders of their fathers to the the wat pa pao temple in chiang mai, where they will adopt the monk’s traditional saffron robes. the ritual is meant to mimic the buddha’s renunciation of his life of material luxury as prince siddhartha.

photos by (click pic) pongmanat tasiri, robert fuller and jack kurtz. (more novice monk photos)

A visit to Thailand in April now too?

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)

Remember this painting?  Awesome that the news and this spectacular painting have collided!!!  
Militia Company of District II Under The Command of Captain Frans Banninck Cocq, also known as The Night Watch by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn, 1642 from the Rijksmueum in Amsterdam.
From the NYTimes article Russia Is Ousted From Group of 8 by U.S. and Allies.
(thanks/via: NYTimes.com)

Remember this painting?  Awesome that the news and this spectacular painting have collided!!!  

Militia Company of District II Under The Command of Captain Frans Banninck Cocq, also known as The Night Watch by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn, 1642 from the Rijksmueum in Amsterdam.

From the NYTimes article Russia Is Ousted From Group of 8 by U.S. and Allies.

(thanks/via: NYTimes.com)

Spectacular starry nights by photographer Michael Shainblum

If only my neighbors would turn their lights off or use dark sky version fixtures, sigh.

(thanks/via: jtotheizzoe and staceythinx)

the batad and bangaan rice terraces of the philippine cordilleras were carved along the natural contours of this mountainside two thousand years ago by the ifugao people, and remain in use by the current ifugao farmers who collectively maintain the ancient but complex system of dams, sluices, channels and bamboo pipes that keep the terraces adequately flooded.

a living cultural landscape, the terraces are a unesco world heritage site, further notable for their altitude, which peaks at 1500 meters, and steep slopes, which can be as high as seventy degrees. owing to the difficult terrain, the ifuago were among the few peoples of the philippines to have successfully resisted any foreign domination and preserved their culture.

photos by (click pic) anna tati, edgar alan zeta-yap, leonomad, kimberley coole, ruro photography, aloïs peiffer and joel bitantes palma

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)

Click this link because the images are much larger over on the Colossal website.

New worm photos from ever-dazzling sea life photographer Alexander Semenov.

(thanks/via: wnycradiolab and Colossal)

the great bear rainforest in british columbia is one of the largest coastal temperate rain forests in the world, with twenty five thousand square miles of mist shrouded fjords and densely forested islands that are home to black bears with white fur.

neither albino nor polar bear, these rare black bears (there are fewer than five hundred) are known as kermode bears, or what the gitga’at first nation call mooksgm’ol, the spirit bear — a word no first nations person spoke of to european fur traders lest they be discovered and hunted. to this day, it remains taboo to hunt a spirit bear, or to mention them to outsiders.

the white fur in these bears is triggered by a recessive mutation of the same gene associated with red hair and fair skin in humans. though it remains unclear as to how the trait arose (or disappeared), it is especially pronounced on certain islands, and is known to confer a day time fishing advantage over the black furred bears (consider the first photo).

photos by (click pic) fabrice simon, eric baccega, paul nicklen, tom svensson, jonathan hayward and dennis binda

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)

From Nicole Guice:

My good friend,Nick Onken, and I have just released our recent collaboration!
What happens when an amazing photographer and a crazy illustrator collaborate? Click on the links and find out!

Special thanks to the gorgeous Fo Porter for being such an amazing model! Nick and I felt so lucky that we go to work with Fo for this project. Fo is represented by Nous Models.

Nick Onken x Nicole Guice Collaboration : XXXo

Video photo story: HERE

FULL PHOTO STORY: HERE

(thanks/via: nicoleguice)

awkwardsituationist:

justin hofman photographs a southern right whale and her calf in the protected warm breeding and birthing waters off argentina’s peninsula valdez.

"i had the opportunity to dive with a few whales and it changed me forever," hofman said. "being in the water with a whale is the most humbling experience i’ve ever had underwater."

the whales are powerful, and hofman, weary of the mother becoming defensive around her calf, kept his distance. but as time went on, the whales, who are actually quite gentle and inquisitive, eventually approached him.

hofman notes that despite what many have assumed, the first image is a single photo and not a composite of two. (previously featured photos by justin hofman).

marine biology doctoral candidate daniel stoupin has photographed a variety of coral species using full spectrum light to reveal fluorescent pigments that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye. click pic for name.

These are beautiful, right?

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)

(via awkwardsituationist)

elephants are conspicuously expressive and joyful creatures. when celebrating a birth or reuniting with old acquaintances, elephants will intertwine their trunks together and engage in friendly trunk wrestling. when trying to console a loved one, or simply showing affection, elephants will stroke or caress each others’ heads and backs with their trunks. the end of an elephant’s trunk is more sensitive than a human’s fingertips. photos by mario moreno

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)

Paris Street Artist Replaces Advertisements With Classic Works of Art

Etienne Lavie places images of famous paintings on signboards.  This is brilliant.  

(thanks/via: kateoplis)

people and their companion animals. photos from steve mccurry’s magnum archive. 1. varanasi 2010, 2. burma 2011, 3.tibet 2001, 4. mumbai 1993, 5. kabul 2002, 6. tibet 2001, 7. cambodia 1999, 8. mumbai 1996, 9. burma 2012, 10. india 2007

(thanks/via: awkwardsituationist)