Especially now, at the end of a marking period for City students, it’s easy to get caught up in the day to day. To quote XKCD, “we live trapped in loops, reliving a few days over and over.” That feels especially true when it comes to disasters, great staggering events that are so hard to comprehend that we simplify them to numbers. Degrees of warming, trees cut down, deaths from COVID-19.
It’s a stale aphorism that a picture is worth a thousand words and, as a writer, I am hesitant to believe it, but the winners of the London Natural History Museum’s annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year Contest certainly make a compelling argument. It’s hard to viscerally understand what it means for the earth to warm 1.5°C over the next 20 years, but it’s easy to feel horror at the thought of the sheer majesty of nature on display in this gallery being threatened.
So remember, looking at these photos, that no matter how many grand silken cathedrals that spider builds, it can’t protect itself from humanity. It’s up to us to preserve that, and that’s an incredible challenge, but it’s a responsibility we all share if we want photos like this to stay possible.
View all of the amazing 2021 winning photos at www.nhm.ac.uk/wpy/gallery.