When it comes to phenomenal photographs, you'd be hard pressed to find images more stunning than the ones taken by photographers on assignment for National Geographic.
With a focus on cultures, animals and environments, Nat Geo has a pretty stunning range of subjects to begin with (let's be real -- seal pups in the arctic are always going to beat, say, politicians in Canberra) and its Instagram account can prove a welcome relief from cat videos and beauty tutorials.
Don't believe us? Here are some of our favourite images captured by Nat Geo photographers. Don't act like you're not impressed.
Based in Slovenia, Jazbec has been working as a contributing photographer for National Geographic Magazine since 2014.
Follow him for: people, animals and things that make you go brrrr.
Ole Street's children stay inside of their house due to the ongoing flu in the settlement of Nuugatsiaq. It is the remotest settlement in the Uumannaq Ice Fjord. The settlement has only about 70 residents; many houses are abandoned, as people have moved away, to settlements in the south. Their school has got only 7 pupils. @natgeo #Greenland #remote #settlement #Arctic #daily #life #family
A hut mounted on a sled allows Pavia Nielsen to spend days at a time on the sea ice, hunting and fishing. A small gas heater inside keeps him warm. Read the entire Melting away story in the November issue of National Geographic Magazine - climate change special. @natgeo #Greenland #climatechange #seaice #Inuits
A freelance photographer for Nat Geo, Joel Sartore has produced more than 30 stories for the publication.
He is also the founder of The Photo Ark.
Follow him for: animals.
photo by @joelsartore | Just hours old, a pair of interior least tern chicks #sleep near their nest at a sand and gravel mine along the Platte River near Fremont, #Nebraska. These chicks and many others have been saved by the Tern and Plover Conservation Partnership, which works with landowners to educate and inspire #conservation actions. In this case, mine workers kept their big trucks away from the nesting areas long enough for the eggs to hatch and chicks leave the nest. To learn more about this remarkable program, visit ternandplover.unl.edu. #PhotoArk #nikonambassador #photooftheday
Skerry has been a contract photographer for Nat Geo since 1998, specialising in marine wildlife and underwater environments.
Follow him for: all things under the sea.
Photo by @BrianSkerry. A loggerhead hatchling feeds amongst Sargasso weeds off the coast of Florida. Loggerheads are currently listed as an endangered species, with their populations dwindling as a result of fishing, trawling, and oceanic pollution. Often times, loggerhead turtles mistake floating plastics for jellyfish, ingesting the debris and endangering the animal. These magnificent creatures can live to be up to 65 years old. Look out for more photographs to learn more about loggerhead turtles and oceanic conservation. @thephotosociety @natgeocreative #turtle #cute #climate #change #loggerhead #florida #underwater #photography #photooftheday #conservation #cute #animals #food #natgeo #NikonAmbassador #NikonLove #NikonNoFilter
Thank you for 350k followers! Photo by @BrianSkerry. A whale shark feeds in the blue water off the coast of Isla Mujeres, Mexico. A small remora swims inside the shark’s mouth, but has little to fear since whale sharks are filter feeders, eating mainly plankton and fish eggs. Whale sharks are currently listed as ‘vulnerable’ due to human pollution and hunting, and populations remain unstable due to the slow reproductive habits of these magnificent creatures. @thephotosociety @natgeocreative #whale #shark #vulnerable #conservation #fish #surprise #prey #food #mexico #photooftheday #conservation #cute #animals #preservation
Photo by @BrianSkerry A Gray Seal folds its flippers and poses underwater in the Gulf of Maine. Extending from Cape Cod to Nova Scotia, the Gulf of Maine and its surrounding waters have been the economic bedrock of New England’s coastal communities, supporting a wide variety of commercial and recreational activities. Unfortunately, many factors currently threaten the vitality of the Gulf of Maine ecosystem today. Decades of pollution of our marine waterways, coastal habitat destruction, overfishing and bottom trawling have wrought havoc in the form of extensive habitat loss and diminished biodiversity. Restoring health to these important resources as rapidly as possible is an imperative. @thephotosociety @natgeocreative #newenglandoceanodyssey #gulfofmaine #maine #nikonambassador #seals
Based in Montana, Vitale is a contract photographer with National Geographic magazine and an ambassador for Nikon.
She is also a member of Ripple Effect Images, an organisation which, as detailed on her website, is made up of "renowned female scientists, writers, photographers and filmmakers working together to create powerful and persuasive stories that shed light on the hardships women in developing countries face and the programs that can help them."
Follow her for: wildlife and environment, women.
Photo by @amivitale. Rajasthani girls watch camel traders as sun falls at the largest camel fair in the world in Pushkar, India. On this #EarthDay remember how intricately connected we are with nature. Want to have your #EarthDay photo published on NatGeo.com? Add #NatgeoEarthDay to your images, then check NatGeo.com on Earth Day, April 22nd. @natgeo @natgeocreative @thephotosociety @nikonusa #nikonusa #nikonlove #nikonnofilter #nikonambassador #india #rajasthan #pushkar #climatechange #conservation #natureisspeaking #savetheplanet #photooftheday #photojournalism #latergram #amivitale
Photo by @amivitale Warmest wishes for the New Year ahead! May it be filled with love and peace to all! The giant panda is among the world's most adored and protected rare animals. Here, a cub at Bifengxia Giant Panda base in Ya'an city. The center is a part of the China Conservation & Research Center for the Giant Panda (CCRCGP), Wolong Nature Center, under the Department of Forestry. Stay tuned for the full story this year #onassignment for @natgeo. #pandas #ipanda #pandacub #giantpanda #Bifengxia #wolong #yaan #sichuan #china #natureispeaking #nikon #nikonambassador #D4s #nikonnofilter #amivitale #photojournalism @ipandacam @natgeocreative @thephotosociety @nikonusa
Photo by @amivitale. Ringo, an orphaned baby Southern White rhino, goes to sleep at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy (@olpejeta) in Kenya. Ringo was abandoned by his mother shortly after birth, but the team at Ol Pejeta is taking care of him to ensure he has a long and happy life. Ol Pejeta is East Africa's largest black rhino sanctuary and the only place on the planet to see the last three Northern White rhinos. @natgeo @natgeocreative @thephotosociety @nature_org @nature_africa @nrt_kenya @nikonusa #conservation #rhinos #southernwhiterhino #northernwhiterhino #whiterhino #kenya #magicalkenya #olpejeta #northernrangelandstrust #savetherhinos #animals #nature #seetheworld #bestdestinations #nikonnofilter #nikon #d4 #nikonambassador #amivitale
Joubert is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and has specialised in African photography for almost 30 years.
Follow her for: All things Africa.
Edwards hails from our very own Melbourne and has been heavily involved in natural history photography for more than two decades.
He is also an International League of Conservation Photographers Fellow.
Follow him for: animals, landscapes, people and Aussie content.
An Asmat warrior in Papua New Guinea displaying a nose ring made of shell. The hole required to feed this wonderful piece is considerably larger than the standard septum piercing found in western society. @natgeocreative #papua #jewelry #piercings #nosering @natgeo @ilcp_photographers #piercing #shelljewelry #shell #fashionphotography #fashiondesigner #fashiongram #warrior #tribe #asmat #passionpassport #bbctravel #huffpostgram
Twilight in the Garden of Eden as an endangered Green Sea Turtle surfaces to breath above a shallow reef on the southern Great Barrier Reef. Thinking of the endless slaughter of this prehistoric survivor on World Turtle Day. Heron Island, Southern Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, Australia Photo by @jasonedwardsng @natgeo @natgeocreative #natgeocreative #natgeo @ILCP_photographers #JasonEdwards #TourismQueensland #WorldTurtleDay #GardenofEden #tranquil #godrays #tropicalreef #stoptheslaughter @HeronIsland #HeronIsland #turtle http://instagram.com/jasonedwardsng/
The snout of a Saltwater Crocodlie Crocodylus porosus, resting on an exposed tidal mud flat. Known to most Aussies as simply Salties this large crocodile has been responsible for many human fatalities. Shot with Nikon's AF-S NIKKOR 800mm f/5.6E FL ED VR. Kimberley Coast, Western Australia Photo by @jasonedwardsng @natgeo @natgeocreative #natgeocreative #natgeo @ILCP_photographers #JasonEdwards #NationalGeographicExpeditions #KimberleyCoast #WesternAustralia #onassignment #TourismAustralia #crocodile @natgeotravel #prehistoric #LinbladExpeditions #dental #Nikon
Cobb is a staff and freelance photographer with National Geographic and was the first woman named White House Photographer of the Year.
Follow her for: people.
Photo by Jodi Cobb @jodicobbphoto // They call them “caged women” in the brothels in Mumbai, India. Human trafficking remains one of the world's most intractable and horrific problems, and huge numbers of women are lured, sold and tricked into the commercial sex industry worldwide.The conditions are horrific, and I often photographed through tears, faced with the hopelessness of their situation and the helplessness of mine. But the thought of the huge number of people, in better positions to help, who would see the photographs in National Geographic, kept me going. People did respond and continue to do so, but human trafficking still exists in even greater numbers—an estimated 27 million people worldwide. The women’s grace and dignity in such degrading conditions both distressed and moved me. @thephotosociety
Photo: @jodicobbphoto | I was in Italy looking for love. On assignment for a National Geographic story that sought to scientifically explain it and its three stages—lust, romantic obsession, and long-term attachment—I roamed the streets searching for photographs to interpret that soul-searing, primal swamp of desire that rearranges our brains and our lives. I nearly walked by the solitary woman in the cafe reading a newspaper. But something about the white ruffle of her skirt and the deep tan of her leg attracted me, and I made a couple of frames and walked on. I didn’t think the picture had anything to do with my assignment. But when I got home and looked closer, I noticed the headline on what was actually a greeting card: Ai Lov You. In the end, I found that searching for an image of love is very much like searching for love itself: The harder you look, the harder it is to find. But when you least expect it, it sneaks right up on you. See other stories of love on @natgeo's Proof post, Picturing Love: The Stories Behind Eight Indelible Images. http://proof.nationalgeographic.com/2015/02/13/picturing-love-the-stories-behind-8-indelible-images/ @natgeo @thephotosociety #love #valentine #valentinesday #italy #europe #latergram
To honor International Women’s Day, a reminder that women are often the most vulnerable to human trafficking. Brick kiln workers in India are held in debt bondage for generations. Owners lend the workers money for an emergency like a medical problem or a funeral, then charge outrageous interest rates so the debts can never be repaid and are passed on to their children. Human trafficking remains one of the world's most intractable and horrific problems—even more so today than when I took on a year-long project on the issue in 2003. To illuminate the plight of an estimated 27 million people held in slavery worldwide, I went to 12 countries where I witnessed unspeakable horrors. The story got the biggest response in the history of National Geographic until then, but not much has changed. The stoicism on this woman’s face humbles me. @thephotosociety @natgeo