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Next year it will start around Halloween.
December 4, 2012 12:46 PM   Subscribe

From the Atlantic's In Focus:2012: The Year in Pictures

"Collected here is Part 1 of a three-part photo summary of the last year, covering its first four months. Be sure to come back tomorrow for Part 2 and Thursday for Part 3. The series will total 135 images in all."
posted by OmieWise (69 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
I want that last photo to be an album cover for a twee country-rock band.
posted by The Whelk at 12:48 PM on December 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


I was amazed how depressing much of the list was. I saw this linked on Twitter half an hour ago and when someone says "hey, go look at the best photos of the year" I sort of assumed they'd all be feel good and damn, it's been a rough year around the world and I wasn't expecting all the war and police photos.
posted by mathowie at 12:50 PM on December 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


Great pictures but I couldn't help coming away thinking I'm glad Huntsman didn't crash through that glass display case. That would really hurt.
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:52 PM on December 4, 2012 [10 favorites]


There's also a leopard attacking a man who appears to have his scalp half torn off.
posted by Egg Shen at 12:53 PM on December 4, 2012 [6 favorites]


Obama's face says a lot about how awful it must be to talk to Jan Brewer.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:54 PM on December 4, 2012 [13 favorites]


There are a lot of awful ones, and I guess that it's an indicator of how desensitized I am that the only one that really affected me was the guy hugging his dog.
posted by gaspode at 12:55 PM on December 4, 2012 [7 favorites]


I wish they understood that 1024 is the max width of some monitors so the pictures need to be a bit smaller to accommodate scroll-bars and such. But then I guess people with 10 year old laptops like me are not their target demographic.
posted by srboisvert at 12:57 PM on December 4, 2012


It's been a crappy year, hasn't it?
posted by tommasz at 12:57 PM on December 4, 2012


The picture of Kim Jong Un looks like he's telling that one soldier to stand up straighter.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 12:58 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


You'll never catch that flying bear with a big pad, you fools.
posted by mullacc at 1:01 PM on December 4, 2012 [6 favorites]


I wish they understood that 1024 is the max width of some monitors so the pictures need to be a bit smaller to accommodate scroll-bars and such.

euuauARARGHHHHHHHHh
posted by MangyCarface at 1:04 PM on December 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


The Bulgarian Communist Party building (#28) looks like a close encounter with the third kind.
posted by gladly at 1:05 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I wish they understood that 1024 is the max width of some monitors so the pictures need to be a bit smaller to accommodate scroll-bars and such. But then I guess people with 10 year old laptops like me are not their target demographic.

Actually, it works fine in Chrome. Seems to be a firefox javascript issue of some sort.
posted by srboisvert at 1:06 PM on December 4, 2012


I love the one of the Dutch guy watching the flood. "Hm. Looks like it rained last night."
posted by The Card Cheat at 1:07 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


What the heck is a generic red carpet photo of Angelina Jolie doing in there?
posted by showbiz_liz at 1:07 PM on December 4, 2012 [4 favorites]


Every year I scroll straight through to the dog photos.
posted by dyobmit at 1:07 PM on December 4, 2012


Molotov cocktails are apparently camera magnets (or the only thing worth photographing at protests). The selection here could give you a really weird idea of why people gather in crowds, or what news is.
posted by RogerB at 1:07 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


December: the month when nothing of import happens. Ever.
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 1:08 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


What the heck is a generic red carpet photo of Angelina Jolie doing in there?

It became a meme.
posted by Egg Shen at 1:10 PM on December 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't quite figure out #28, the House of the Bulgarian Communist Party one. Is he standing underneath an unfinished floor, or ceiling, or something?

Anyway, hoping parts 2 and 3 of this series have a higher proportion of cheerful stuff in them. There's still the Olympics, Barack winning, and Gangnam Style to go. Positive stuff does happen in life and society.
posted by Wordshore at 1:12 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


The more I look at these Big Picture lists the more I really think they're crying out for a new version of Barthes's Mythologies rather than just captions. Surely some clever reader is out there who could unpack the weird semi-unconscious value-system, the submerged political emotions and the Atlantic Monthly worldview that underpin the selection. Like, what makes the dog taking the Pope's place a great photo isn't the photo — there's nothing much special about the image itself, but it functions as a real-life political cartoon, a comic inversion that allows the viewer a moment of comfort. While what lies behind the selection of all the people on fire is both murkier and ultimately uglier.
posted by RogerB at 1:14 PM on December 4, 2012 [5 favorites]


Apparently a leopard can and will scalp you if given the opportunity.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 1:15 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


O HAI BEAR is my favorite.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:15 PM on December 4, 2012


I can't quite figure out #28, the House of the Bulgarian Communist Party one. Is he standing underneath an unfinished floor, or ceiling, or something?

The Buzludzha monument previously. The photos should give you a better idea of the layout of the place.
posted by figurant at 1:15 PM on December 4, 2012


...horses are ridden through the bonfires on the night before the official day of honoring animals in Spain.

Wait. What?
posted by Splunge at 1:19 PM on December 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


That's just how they do things there.
posted by elizardbits at 1:25 PM on December 4, 2012


The fifth commandment involves flinging your elderly relatives into the fire.
posted by elizardbits at 1:26 PM on December 4, 2012


Yeah, Splunge. I can't imagine the horses think it much of an honor.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 1:26 PM on December 4, 2012


Oh wow, that molotov cocktail shot is amazing.
posted by Theta States at 1:26 PM on December 4, 2012


I love the dog in #32. He looks like he's just having a really good day as the people cheer him.
posted by COBRA! at 1:27 PM on December 4, 2012 [5 favorites]


We should set up parades just for good dogs.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:27 PM on December 4, 2012 [19 favorites]


horses are ridden through the bonfires on the night before the official day of honoring animals in Spain

See, it makes the day of honor seem all that much better since they don't have to go through a bonfire again.
posted by exogenous at 1:28 PM on December 4, 2012


Some pretty good ones, a lot more bleh ones than I expected. Kinda surprised the only US election photo was from a fellow who hardly made it INTO the primaries as opposed to either of the main candidates.

Wish they stopped give the Tea Partiers as much press as they do
posted by edgeways at 1:28 PM on December 4, 2012


O HAI BEAR is my favorite.
Oh, great, someone's imported dropbears to Colorado.
posted by jferg at 1:30 PM on December 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


Wait, so that photo of Obama on the Rosa Parks bus is the one the rightwingers were condemning as further proof of Obama's horrible crushing ego? Yeegads.
posted by Theta States at 1:30 PM on December 4, 2012


Some pretty good ones, a lot more bleh ones than I expected. Kinda surprised the only US election photo was from a fellow who hardly made it INTO the primaries as opposed to either of the main candidates.

The link was posted prematurely; this is only part one of three.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:31 PM on December 4, 2012


horses are ridden through the bonfires on the night before the official day of honoring animals in Spain

Known among the horses as "At Least I'm Not A Bull" Day.
posted by benito.strauss at 1:34 PM on December 4, 2012 [10 favorites]


The woman with the red paint. Sheesh. Facepalm.
posted by panaceanot at 1:36 PM on December 4, 2012 [5 favorites]


O HAI BEAR is my favorite.

O HAI bear makes me sad because iirc it died later that week, or was put down, no?
posted by elizardbits at 1:40 PM on December 4, 2012


I wish they understood that 1024 is the max width of some monitors so the pictures need to be a bit smaller

They are smaller than 1024; they're 991 wide, a size I suspect was carefully chosen by Metafilter's own Kokogiak to be the exact maximum width displayable on a small screen. His previous Big Picture site is only 990 pixels wide; I like to think he was one-upping his old employer.

I can't tell you how many news websites still have a "click to enlarge" and you get an image that's, oh, 400 x 300. So sad.
posted by Nelson at 1:47 PM on December 4, 2012


My ears are burning, oh yeah, it's Mefi talking about my photos of the year entry, woohoo.

All feedback welcome, criticism especially. trust me, I never set out to make these "depressing scenes from the past year". And - this was only part one of three, more to come tomorrow and Thursday, if you didn't already see what you were hoping for.

Also note that I never use hyperbole in my titles. Someone else might call the entry "Best photos of 2012", but that's not what I'm aiming for, I'm just trying to capture the year as best I can, thus the title "2012: The Year in Photos".

Back to work now, soooo many photographs... eyes bleary, head swimmy, etc.
posted by kokogiak at 1:59 PM on December 4, 2012 [17 favorites]


They are smaller than 1024; they're 991 wide, a size I suspect was carefully chosen by Metafilter's own Kokogiak to be the exact maximum width displayable on a small screen. His previous Big Picture site is only 990 pixels wide; I like to think he was one-upping his old employer.

Yeah, I figured that out when I inspected the element with firebug. It seems that somehow on my firefox install the images are not being resized for some reason even with all hundreds of the javascripts enabled in noscript. Should have at least done the homework of firing the page up in Chrome before I opened my big whining mouth.
posted by srboisvert at 1:59 PM on December 4, 2012


cannot wait to see which photo(s) of Romney you choose. Please say roller-coaster or pumping gas
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:02 PM on December 4, 2012


@2bucksplus - Romney is a rare bird post-election. Very few press photos available.
posted by kokogiak at 2:05 PM on December 4, 2012


Susan Clark of Santa Monica, California, who opposes health care reform, stands with a red hand painted over her mouth to represent what she said is socialism taking away her choices and rights...


Arrraghhh!!

One can only hope the rest of the month will be a slow time for photogs.
posted by BlueHorse at 2:05 PM on December 4, 2012


Those two little white dogs in the Fukushima picture can come be in the First Annual MetaFilter Good Dog Parade.

I love the photo of Federer that makes it look like he is playing tennis on the surface of the sun.
posted by Rock Steady at 2:13 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: Julian, a two-month old pet monkey, bites the ear of Kan, a transvestite performer
posted by eugenen at 2:40 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I like the beer-hat.
posted by ostro at 2:40 PM on December 4, 2012


Wow I wish the one of the guy with his scalp half off had come with some kind of warning. I can't unsee that.
posted by peacheater at 2:45 PM on December 4, 2012


kokogiak: if you're having trouble finding some more good ones, I'll send you my vacation pictures from summer. Lots of great ones in that bunch.
posted by perhapses at 2:47 PM on December 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


kokogiak: if you're having trouble finding some more good ones, I'll send you my vacation pictures from summer. Lots of great ones in that bunch.

Ooh, good thinking. My kids were extra-cute this year, too. Just need an e-mail address!
posted by not that girl at 3:04 PM on December 4, 2012


More photos of the Bulgarian Communist monument (#28) here (warning: daily mail).
posted by vidur at 3:06 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


If your eyes aren't already fried, here is Buzzfeed's assessment of The 45 Most Powerful Pictures of 2012 (Jan.-Nov. edition, natch).
posted by twsf at 3:39 PM on December 4, 2012


The picture of Kim Jong Un looks like he's telling that one soldier to stand up straighter.

The word that came to mind for me was "dominoes."
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:45 PM on December 4, 2012 [4 favorites]


I think it's pretty cool that, finally, man was able to document a bear's ascent into a tree.
posted by Turkey Glue at 3:50 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


There's also a leopard attacking a man who appears to have his scalp half torn off.

I have my problems with the world - chief among them that I don't want to emerge from bed on this cold rainy day and engage with it - but it's stuff like this that gets me going. Most of the nightmares I get involve being chased by leopards and tigers, usually in a colonial-isque bungalow that has seen better days, not unlike what you see in that picture.
posted by the cydonian at 5:50 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Guys - I think the thing you see flying up from the head of the guy in the leopard photo is just his hair.

Mind you, if any of you has proof to the contrary please don't tell me, but "hair" is how it read to me and I'd like to keep it that way please.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:04 PM on December 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was hoping it was a toupée.

In fact, I think I'll stick with that explanation.
posted by merelyglib at 6:18 PM on December 4, 2012


The Kim Jong Un picture is one of the greatest photos I've ever seen. It takes a while to process just how much it says
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:53 PM on December 4, 2012


Hey! The photo of the man hugging his dog is from my hometown newspaper. Good job Gary Cosby! (He and the other main photographer at that paper have done great work for years.)
posted by ocherdraco at 8:52 PM on December 4, 2012


Part 2 is up!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:59 AM on December 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Hey, question I've always meant to ask about #33, the grumpy-faced US gymnast who took silver. Was she really that pissed off during the whole medal ceremony, or did the photographer happen to catch a lucky split-second when she had a puss on her face?
posted by Rock Steady at 10:08 AM on December 5, 2012


Part 2 is relatively better than Part 1. No leopard mauling's for one. Lots of fun with photography for another; there's this awesome picture of Bill Murray photographing the photographers with his tiny camera. Or (a cut-out of) Muhammed Ali punching down on folks in Brazil. The moon being lifted by the Olympic rings at Tower Bridge. And yes, Obama doing some dark arts thing during a speech.

Lots to love.
posted by the cydonian at 7:50 PM on December 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Slight criticism. The Bulgarian ex-commie headquarters is a meglomaniac building, but the image with (for example) the Washington monument isn't described negatively. As RogerB commented up thread, the captions and the selections are revealing of a worldview that jars me a bit.
posted by bystander at 11:22 PM on December 5, 2012


When civilization has collapsed and risen again, the archaeologists won't need to guess at the received ideas of our time, because they're all to be found in the Atlantic.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:14 AM on December 6, 2012


This one is going to be the death of me because OMG BUKKIT OF PUPPIES.
posted by elizardbits at 10:03 AM on December 6, 2012


Part 3, opening with the most re-tweeted photo in Twitter history.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:26 AM on December 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


Woah. I think I've been to that bar in image #10.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 10:43 AM on December 6, 2012


I really like the pairing of #44 and #45.
posted by figurant at 11:42 AM on December 6, 2012


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