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In Focus

The Biggest Story in Photos

In Focus, a news photography blog from the Atlantic Online. Updated 4 to 5 times a week with stories told in large-format images from some of the best photojournalists in the world. Curated & Edited by Alan Taylor



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About 4 weeks ago St. Petersburg From Above - 12 photos - http://theatln.tc/1gCh0GV - Recently, photographer Amos Chapple spent some time in Saint Petersburg, Russia's second-largest city. He used a small drone to lift his camera high above the cathedrals and fortresses, capturing some amazing aerial photos. Chapple: "There's a legend in Russia that Saint Petersburg was constructed in the blue heavens and lowered in one piece into the marshland, 'for how otherwise could a city so beautiful exist in a region so bleak.'"
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About 7 weeks ago Carnival 2014 Around the World - 35 photos - http://theatln.tc/1okjicH - Carnival Season 2014 is well under way. All over the globe, celebrations have been held as a final pre-Lent bacchanalian festival -- a way to usher out the winter and welcome spring. In Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, millions took to the streets for days of rowdy, joyous parades and festivities, bringing the nation to a halt for its annual wild party. More than 900,000 Brazilian and foreign tourists were expected join Rio's six million residents in the celebrations, with the city's top samba schools putting on their extravagant processions.
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About 7 weeks ago The Murmurations of Starlings - 22 photos - http://theatln.tc/1mNnXoJ - When starlings flock together, wheeling and darting through the sky in tight, fluid formations, we call it a murmuration. These murmurations can range from small groups of a few hundred starlings in a small ball, to undulating seas of millions of birds, blocking out the sun. I thought today would be a good day to just take a few moments and appreciate the simple beauty of murmurations, captured by various photographers over the past few years.
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About 5 weeks ago Winners of the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards, Part I - 24 photos - http://theatln.tc/1mfBnMy - The Sony World Photography Awards have announced the winners of their Open, Youth, and National Award competitions today. The winners were selected from over 70,000 entries submitted by photo enthusiasts and amateurs from across the world. Overall winners and the judging of the final categories are set to be announced on April 30.
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About 11 weeks ago The 2014 Sony World Photography Awards - 33 photos - http://theatln.tc/1ik1Cwi - The Sony World Photography Awards, an annual competition hosted by the World Photography Organisation, has recently announced its shortlist of winners. This year's contest attracted more than 140,000 entries from 166 countries. The organizers have been kind enough to share some of their shortlisted images with In Focus, gathered below. Winners are scheduled to be announced in March and April.
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About 2 weeks ago London and the U.K. From Above - 24 photos - http://theatln.tc/1jqUG20 - Photographer Jason Hawkes has been making fascinating aerial images since 1991. With a gyro-stabilized camera, he takes photos directly from the open door of a helicopter.  Hawkes has covered subjects around the world, but specializes in aerial shots of the United Kingdom. Once more, he's been kind enough to share some of his recent photos with us here.
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About 11 weeks ago Afghan Refugees in Pakistan - 30 photos - http://theatln.tc/1k4iZ84 - For more than three decades, Pakistan has been home to one of the world's largest refugee communities: more than a million Afghans who have fled years of warfare in their home country. Living in temporary shelters along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, and cared for by the the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Pakistan's government, and numerous international care agencies, this massive and persistent population remains vulnerable to multiple dangers, from outbreaks of disease to violence spilling over from the war next door. Associated Press photographer Muhammed Muheisen has spent the past several years in Pakistan, documenting the lives of these refugees, with a particular focus on the most vulnerable: the children caught up in the chaos as their families try to keep them safe.
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About 10 weeks ago Sochi 2014: The Opening Ceremony - 15 photos so far - http://theatln.tc/1fEwGoO - Right now, in Sochi, Russia, the Opening Ceremony of the XXII Olympic Winter Games is under way. The ceremony is a huge performance, with the host nation of Russia presenting itself on the world stage, introducing thousands of athletes in the Parade of Nations, firing off pyrotechnics, choreographing dancers, lightshows, and more. We'll start out with a handful of images from the start of the ceremony, and I'll be posting updates throughout the day, as more great photos become available.
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About 9 weeks ago Kiev Truce Shattered, Dozens Killed - 37 photos - http://theatln.tc/1ffEBfX - Last night, Ukraine's President Viktor Yanukovych, working with opposition leaders in the months-long protest, declared a truce, hoping to begin negotiations. Within hours, both sides were accusing the other of betraying the agreement, and some of the most-violent clashes to date took place, leaving dozens of protesters lying dead in Kiev's Independence Square, and hundreds more injured in nearby aid centers and hospitals. With the failure of these negotiations, and the escalating violence, fears are growing that President Yanukovych will declare a state of emergency, bringing military enforcement into the situation.
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About 6 weeks ago "Believed to Be Russian Soldiers" - 38 photos - http://theatln.tc/1eoMlal - Less than two weeks ago, after Ukrainian protesters appeared to have ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, thousands of soldiers bearing no insignia or identifying marks began appearing in Ukraine's pro-Russian Crimean peninsula. Russian authorities deny that these men are invading Russian soldiers, instead describing them as "local self-defense forces" wearing uniforms available from army surplus centers. However, numerous reports on the ground have identified the troops as Russian, including direct interviews with several soldiers. As Crimean lawmakers set up a March 16 referendum on independence from Ukraine, these armed men have surrounded numerous Ukrainian military facilities, blocking entrances, and set up roadblocks on highways throughout the region.