On December 26, 2019, amateur photographer Elias Chasiotis captured an incredible ‘red devil horns’ sunrise over the Persian Gulf during a rare solar eclipse.
The Athens-based photographer was vacationing in the coastal city of Al Wakrah in Qatar just before the new year when he snapped the rare spectacle of the moon blocking the sun. The sun appears to rise in two pieces amid the cloudiness.
“Astronomy has attracted me since I was a kid,” Chasiotis said in an interview with Bored Panda. “I’ve been an amateur astrophotographer for the last 15 years as well. I took these photos in the coastal city of Al Wakrah, Qatar, on the morning of December 26, 2019, when an annular eclipse was in progress.”
“I was worried that nothing would come out of the eclipse. However, when the sun finally began to rise, it looked like two separate pieces, some sort of red horns piercing the sea. It soon took the form of a crescent, with the so-called ‘Etruscan vase’ inferior mirage effect visible. Due to its shape, the phenomenon was nicknamed the ‘evil sunrise.’”
Interestingly, images of the red crescent sunrise emerged a few days before the assassination of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani. Make of that what you will.
Knitting is a popular hobby in Finland. But 30-year-old artist Liisa Hietnanen takes the practice to a whole new level.
She uses wool to create life-size crocheted sculptures of the neighbors in her village.
“The slow handcraft techniques work as a counterforce to the accelerating pace in different areas of life,” says the artist, who uses photographs and face-to-face meetings to help create these fiber people.
“To me the more important values in my works are not likeness or resemblance.
“The works are rather about encountering someone very concretely, seeing the other for real and getting to know them slowly. I see these as relevant values and balancing actions especially in contrast to quick stirs and thin encounters in social media.”
Check out more of Hietanen’s creative vision below.
William Mullan is a photographer who specializes in taking pictures of rare apples from around the world.
The golden Knobbed Russet, the star-shaped api etoile, hard red Black Oxford apple — these are just a few of the varieties that appear in Mullan’s 200-page photo-book, Odd Apples.
Writes Atlas Obscura on how Mullan’s fascination with apples came to be:
Mullan was born in the United States, but grew up in the United Kingdom, where a teenage encounter with an Egremont Russet led to his love of apples. Its spicy, persimmon-like flavor “just blew my mind,” he says. But many of the apples he’s photographed were born in North America, including such romantic cultivars as the Black Oxford and Hidden Rose.
“There’s just this sense of infinity with [apples] that I love,” Mullan says. While he imagines he’ll move on to other subjects in the future, for now, he’s still entranced by apples.
Even better, during his exhibits, he slices the apples open and passes the edibles around for his audience to enjoy.
In the 1880s, French designers Maurice Koechlin and Émile Nouguier mocked up what would become the Eiffel Tower. You can even see the size comparison to other landmarks, including the Statue of Liberty.
Thankfully, someone held on to the 14 other rejected designs. Number 3 seems to come closest to the final design, with embellished trusses added to the lower tier.
It’s hard to imagine Paris without the iconic Eiffel Tower today. However, engineer Gustave Eiffel never built the structure with the intention of keeping it up.
The city wanted to tear it down after the Exposition Universelle of 1889. But the same community of artists who criticized the Eiffel Tower’s initial design ended up mobilizing to save it.
Here’s something you can look at for hours: looping waves in progress.
Created using visual effect software Houdini by Polish motion designer who goes by the name 00.032, according to her dribble page, the piece takes after Matthieu Lehanneur’s original physical work of the same vein.
The French designer Lehanneur constructed a furniture collection called Ocean Memories that depicts three-dimensional ocean currents frozen into stone and bronze sculptures.
Lehanneur and 00.032 demonstrate both static and motion-centric representations of the Earth’s ocean.
Waves, a symbol of natural energy, have been a fascination with artists such as Hokusai for centuries.
In 1911, Swedish film company Svenska Biografteatern recorded its trip to New York.
Fortunately, the footage survived and most recently was speed-corrected (slowed down) and reproduced with the ambient audio of street sounds of car horns, horses, and police whistles to give us a sense of the environment back then.
There’s also a color version of the 8-minute long video restored via neural networks, featuring 60 frames per second and 4k image resolution.
Notice all the people wearing hats
The streets look a bit empty compared to today’s zoo
Cable powered trolleys
The kids go nuts when the camera is on them. Nothing’s changed!
Treadmills were originally torture devices, meant to break the mind, body, and spirit of English prisoners.
Two hundred years ago, the treadmill was invented in England as a prison rehabilitation device. It was meant to cause the incarcerated to suffer and learn from their sweat.
Groups of prisoners were forced to walk 6 hours a day, pumping out water, milling corn powering the mills, thus the term “tread-mill.”
Treadmills evolved into a mechanism for punishment to prevent poor people from committing crimes to take advantage of the necessities in jail.
Britain banned treadmills in 1989, seeing their punishment no longer useful.
An 1885 British Medical Journal article called “Death on the Treadmill,” chastized Durham Prison for the treadmill-induced death of a prisoner with heart disease. Its overall high death rate—one fatality a week—prompted the conclusion that “[t]he ‘mill’ is not useful, and has proved itself occasionally injurious.”
Having banned treadmills in 1828 to adopt a “collective industry” where prisoners became factory workers, America revamped the treadmill as an exercise machine.
It resurfaced in 1913 with a U.S. patent for a “training-machine.” In the 1960s, the American mechanical engineer William Staub created a home fitness machine called the PaceMaster 600. He began manufacturing home treadmills in New Jersey. (He used it often himself, right up until the months before his death at the age of 96.)
As this article points out, treadmills are the top-selling training equipment in the US but still come with all the baggage (injuries and boredom) that prisoners endured in England.
There is a bizarre-looking church in the Indonesian jungle that’s shaped like a giant chicken.
Located in the forests of Magelang, Central Java (here it is on Google Maps, Gereja Ayam or “Chicken Church” was built in 1992 by Daniel Alamsjah.
He foresaw the structure in the late 80s when he received a spiritual message from God telling him to construct a prayer house for all religions in the shape of a dove. However, given the small beak and fluffy feathers, it appears to look more like a chicken.
Closed temporarily in 2000 for renovation — the second-floor walls have since been repainted with scenes from Indonesian mythology — the church has since been reopened as a tourist attraction but still offers a religious tour.
You can learn more about the church on its official tourism website.
The Bailong Elevator is the world’s highest outdoor elevator, towering an astonishing 1,070 feet high inside the National Forest Park in the Wulingyuan area of Zhangjiajie, China. Opened in 2002, the cliff-facing elevator allows 50 visitors at a time to skip up the mountain in two minutes versus a dangerous five-hour car ride.
As you can imagine, the outdoor lift also provides panoramic scenery to its riders of bridges and villages below. Meanwhile, the top of the mountain features the scenic Yuanjiajie natural heritage spot.