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This Instagram Account Shows the World in Perfect Symmetry

With over 400 million users, Instagram's trove of photos can become a bit chaotic, but there is an account that can restore a little balance and order to your feed. Symmetrical Monsters is a curated account that finds and shares snaps from photographers around the world with a focus on symmetry.

From bridge trusses and staircases to skyscrapers and corridors, Symmetrical Monsters's hundreds of images have pulled in many fans (and many likes). The account, created by user Traperture, invites its nearly 70,000 followers to tag photos with the #symmetricalmonsters hashtag for the opportunity to be featured. Original photographers are then credited when their work is reposted.

Still, it's unclear why we seek out symmetry. Physicist Alan Lightman argues that our brains are hard-wired to want things to be symmetrical. "The answer must be partly psychological...symmetry represents order, and we crave order in this strange universe we find ourselves in," Lightman writes in his book The Accidental Universe: The World You Thought You Knew. He adds that because our brains "developed out of nature," humans are not drawn to symmetry in nature but are ourselves a part of it.

Check out some of the perfectly balanced photos below, and see more via Instagram.

Images via Symmetrical Monsters on Instagram.

[h/t: Design Taxi]

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David Nadlinger
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science
This Photo of a Single Atom Won a Science Photography Top Prize
David Nadlinger
David Nadlinger

While you've been busy finding just the right Instagram filter for your cat, a University of Oxford graduate student has been occupied with visualizing a single atom and capturing it in a still frame. And the remarkable feat recently earned an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council photography award. Why? It was taken with a conventional camera, and the atom can be seen with the naked eye.

Take a look:

A close-up of a single atom in an ion trap
David Nadlinger

That tiny dot in between the two parallel metal electrodes is a strontium atom suspended by electric fields in an ion trap. It’s visible because the photographer, Ph.D. candidate David Nadlinger, projected blue violet light into a vacuum chamber. The atom absorbed and reflected the light, allowing Nadlinger to snap a photo in the split instant the atom was viewable. The space between the two points is just 0.08 of an inch.

Nadlinger dubbed the image "Single Atom in an Ion Trap" and took the Council’s top award. In a statement, he expressed enthusiasm that other people are now able to see what his work in quantum computing looks like.

[h/t Newsweek]

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iStock
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Animals
London Photographer Captures the Dogs of the World in Their Own Habitats
iStock
iStock

When snapping pictures, some travel photographers prefer to focus on people walking the streets. Highlighting the local residents can help ground a place in reality, but humans aren’t the only subjects worth capturing. For his project "Dogs, Dogs, Dogs", London-based photographer Alan Schaller documents the canines that he finds in all corners of the globe.

According to My Modern Met, Schaller started out photographing people he met on his travels. The high-contrast, black-and-white look of his work has earned him widespread recognition. For his latest project, he has chosen to showcase dogs in the same style.

Schaller described dogs to My Modern Met as “consistently friendly, unpredictable, and amusing” compared to humans. When he sees a dog he wants to photograph, he will first ask the owner's permission, then bend down to the pet’s level to gain its trust. He has photographed dogs in Norway, England, India, Thailand, Turkey, and plenty of places in between, and the personalities of the dogs he captures are just as diverse as their homes. You can check out his photography below and follow Schaller on Instagram to see more of his work.

[h/t My Modern Met]

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