There’s beauty everywhere around us. And even though we might forget about this little fact, when we slow down, breathe in deeply, and take a closer look, we’ll notice just how gorgeous and soul-healing life can be.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the r/MostBeautiful subreddit celebrates aesthetics in whatever form they might take. The subreddit is home to nearly 1 million members who are urged to share photos about the beauty in the world around them, from the simple and ordinary to the “majestic and awe-inspiring.” The online group is very inclusive and focused, encouraging people to share photos that they personally find nice-looking.
We firmly believe that things and sights of beauty need to be seen by as many Pandas as possible. So we’ve collected some of the most jaw-dropping pics, as shared on r/MostBeautiful, to bring a bit of wonder into your lives at the start of the new year. Scroll down, enjoy, and upvote your favorite photos, dear Readers.
Bored Panda reached out to one of the moderators at r/MostBeautiful to have a chat about the subreddit's history, and we also got in touch with nature and wildlife photographer Roeselien Raimond from the Netherlands to talk about lighting, composition, aesthetics, flow, the relationship between thinking and intuition when taking pictures, and post-processing in photography. Scroll down for both of Bored Panda's full interviews with the moderator and professional photographer. And if you're interested in seeing some of Roeselien's wonderfully foxy photos, you can find them on her website, as well as in her previous articles on Bored Panda here, here, and here.
Summer Day In Lovatnet, Norway
The r/MostBeautiful subreddit was born after the founder and chief moderator challenged himself to find three beautiful things every day. "As part of that effort, he collected images of various stuff he found beautiful. Eventually, he had a large collection of photos and decided to create a subreddit where he can share all of these," one of the moderators managing the r/MostBeautiful online community told Bored Panda about the roots of the group.
They told Bored Panda that the sub has changed "a great deal" over the past nearly-seven years, since 2015. There has been a noticeable shift towards featuring landscapes. "Our content used to be much more eclectic. We featured not just landscapes but a lot of other things—sculptures, paintings, architecture, portraits, beautifully designed objects, or machines, basically anything that we found beautiful. As the sub grew and as our subscribers began actively contributing to it, we found the content to be skewing more towards landscapes."
They added that they still welcome contributions that feature different subjects, too, not just landscapes. So you shouldn't be spooked if you'd like to share something that you personally find to be beautiful.
Since the content shared on r/MostBeautiful of original content and non-original images, you can't expect every single pic to be of the same quality. Not everyone is a professional photographer, after all.
"Inevitably, you will see photos that may not be as beautifully composed as other submissions. We try to curate as best as we can without driving away contributors. It's a tricky thing— balancing the desire to be a welcoming sub to people who want to contribute images that they find beautiful while trying to maintain the quality of the content," the moderator said that the team takes a mixed approach of looking at objective aesthetic value and the subjectivity factor when evaluating the photos shared on r/MostBeautiful.
I was also curious to take a peek into what it's like to take on the role of a moderator. "I have not quantified the amount of time I spend managing this community, to be honest. Some days are easier than others," the mod told me. "In the beginning, it was truly time intensive, but as time went by and you found your groove and learned the ways automoderator can help ease the work, things became smoother and much more manageable."
Cherry Blossoms In Japan
Dutch photographer Roeselien highlighted the fact that light and lighting are "everything" when it comes to photography. " I’m always checking the weather, wondering if there’s a chance on a beautiful sunrise or sunset. Light can give a photo that magical touch that I’m always looking for," she said that she's always aware of how the weather conditions will impact her work.
Meanwhile, when it comes to composition, the nature photographer listens to her intuition. "I never ever think about rules of thirds or golden ratio. Not that I think these rules aren’t important. Quite the contrary. But I sort of internalized them, so that I don’t have to worry about them anymore," she told Bored Panda. that at a certain point professionals turn conscious decisions into unconscious ones.
Full Moon Setting Behind A Lime Tree On A Hill
I was interested to get into the head of a professional photographer and learn about when they know when to take a photo. "I think this varies greatly from photographer to photographer," Roeselien told me.
"I have colleagues who plan everything down to the last detail and who work fully rationally. Not me, though. I shoot from my heart. Once my head gets involved, it might technically still be a good photo, but usually, these are not the images that make me happy," she said that she likes to rely on intuition and to avoid overthinking.
"Only when thinking stops and I end up in a flow, in which time, the cold and every inconvenience disappears, I take pictures that really move me and given the many positive responses, I have the feeling that these photos also touch others the most."
Tree In A Blue Flower Field
A Walk Through A Rainforest Inside A Volcano On Terceira Island
Meanwhile, photographer Roeselien explained to Bored Panda the role that she thinks post-processing plays in photography. She said that this shouldn't be the main focus of what a photographer does.
"Although post-processing is an important aspect, I usually don’t spend much time on it. If a photo needs more than 5 minutes of editing, it’s probably just not good enough. With a few exceptions," she said.
"I crop, adjust contrasts and lighting. I denoise and sharpen where necessary and I remove (small) disturbing elements. Oh, and I love to play with color, depending on my mood. Sometimes, I pull on the red curve and sometimes I remove some blue cast. I just do as it feels."
Tranquillity Of Nature. The First Snow And A Lonely Tree In Järvenpää, Finland
Tallest Indoor Waterfall Surrounded By Terraced Indoor Forests In Changi Airport, Singapore
The r/MostBeautiful subreddit has been around since April 2015, and in that time, it has amassed nearly 954k members, eager to get their daily dose of aesthetics.
The moderators are very big on transparency and they ask that anyone posting photos credit the content creators and sources. They suggest that members use either Google or TinyEye reverse image search to find the original sources. “If you submit unattributed content or ignore requests for attribution, your future submissions may be filtered,” they warn.
Meanwhile, if you’re posting a photo that you’ve taken yourself, you can include the OC (Original Content) abbreviation either in the title or in the comments.
The moderators ask that redditors don’t submit any low-effort or poor-quality images. The subreddit is about featuring the ‘Most Beautiful’ things, after all. And beauty takes effort.
What’s more, posters are asked to share up to a maximum of 2 submissions per day. “However, please limit submissions to two images within a 24-hour period, whether OC or non-OC,” the moderators hint that quality should come before quantity. And that members should avoid spamming the group and overwhelming the feed.
A Tiny Douglas Fir Tree Growing On A Submerged Log In Fairy Lake
A while back, I spoke about beauty with Dr. Jane Nicholas from St. Gerome’s University at the University of Waterloo. She told me that modern culture is visual culture and, as a result, things like the beauty industry have grown substantially over the 20th century.
“Its expansion reveals the importance of beauty in people’s lives as it shapes their identities, especially in regard to gender,” she told Bored Panda.
According to Dr. Nicholas, as more and more people live in anonymous, increasingly-dense cities, appearances and visuals become how we make judgments about things and people.
“So how one appears is often presumed to be who one is. Historically, the rise of the modern city was seen as the place of quick judgments on appearances in places that were crowded but also built for observation. Evaluation by one’s appearance, then, took on new importance. This has only intensified,” she said.
Went For A Walk By My House And I Think I Found The Path To Narnia.
The history expert said that beauty is, both at the same time, very personal and deeply culturally driven. So, as a result, the beauty industry finds itself intrinsically linked to the consumer.
“It provides products and images for consumption and how consumers take those up largely determines its success. Beauty products and practices have to resonate with consumers, who are not simply dupes but often thoughtful and measured in what they want and can consume,” Dr. Nicholas told Bored Panda.
The Blanketed Hills Of Tuscany
“Gaps in services and products lead to further innovation. Throughout the twentieth century, for example, women of color struggled to be appropriately represented and struggled to find appropriate products. In multiple ways, the industry was forced to grow and expand to respond properly to their needs. Black entrepreneurs often led the way,” she said.
What was once seen as very natural, widely accepted, and done for the sake of beauty can now seem odd, bizarre, downright weird.
“When dislocated from their context, what was typical in one time period seems strange in another. Today, we see the highly filtered, fully made-up selfie as quite ordinary. When you pause to consider it though, it is interesting to think about how those reflect changes in technology (both digital and in cosmetics), as well as in dominant presumptions of what is considered beautiful. It can also be reflective of the democratization of techniques in lighting and makeup application that were historically reserved for insiders within modeling. Now, anyone can use them,” Dr. Nicholas said.