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Discovering — and telling — stories from around the world. Curated by Instagram’s community team.

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“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.” —Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. This is one of artist and writer Kadir Nelson’s (@kadirnelson) favorite quotes from the American civil rights leader, whose birthday is celebrated on January 16. “I admire Dr. King’s faith in his beliefs and willingness to demonstrate the powerful example of intelligence, spiritual tenacity and hard work,” says Kadir, who is based in Los Angeles. “Individuals like Dr. King, who embrace their inner hero, are recurring subjects in my work. He, and all of those who fought against social injustice, paved a way for creative people like myself who stand on their shoulders — and are now free to express ourselves creatively in fields that were not as open as they are today.” #MLKDay Photo by @kadirnelson
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The good times keep rolling atop this snow-covered hill in Berlin. “After my daughter’s midday nap, we went to that spot and had our very first sled session together,” says Markus Braumann (@markusbraumann). #TheWeekOnInstagram Photo by @markusbraumann
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Fog as far as the eye can see. David Afandi (@maspeot) shares a tranquil moment overlooking the view from Bukit Panguk Kediwung, Indonesia. #TheWeekOnInstagram Photo by @maspeot
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Meet Shu (@shuthebear): an avid explorer — who happens to be a stuffed bear. He’s adventured to places like Vietnam, Malaysia and Iceland, but before he met Manel Mora, he was looking at the world through the display window of a gift shop in Spain. “He likes to feel a part of the place that welcomes him,” says Manel, who helps Shu share his travel stories. “When tourists and locals see a teddy bear posing for the camera, everyone takes out their cameras, and amidst laughter, they ask about the photo session.” Discover more stories from the Spanish-speaking community on @instagrames. Photo by @shuthebear
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We owe this captivating #BoomerangOfTheWeek to one big rock and Fernando Carreras’ (@fernycarreras) creativity. “Temperatures in areas of the mountains in Cuenca have been down to -13 C [9 F], so many lakes were frozen,” explains Fernando, who was out taking photos, videos and Boomerangs for his ecotourism company. #Boomerang by @fernycarreras
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A farmer and his canine companion end a long day of work on their farm. “The man is a very nice and generous guy, and the dog seems to have the same personality of its owner,” says Sergio Ranalli (@sergio_ranalli) who captured this moment in Brazil. “It is a beautiful friendship — full of fellowship, respect and trust.” #TheWeekOnInstagram Photo by @sergio_ranalli
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Photographer Thiago Cavalcanti’s (@thiagocavalcantifotografia) office is a big, beautiful coral reef, but he assures us: this perfectly timed underwater encounter doesn’t happen every day. 🐠 Follow along as we feature more of our favorite moments from #TheWeekOnInstagram. Photo by @thiagocavalcantifotografia
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Weekend Hashtag Project: #WHPfollowthelight The goal this weekend is to make photos and videos inspired by the diverse qualities of light — like this one by @xenichez. Here’s how to get started: Play around with different ways light can draw attention to a figure or action — such as a golden halo around a single person or multiple sources of light, adding depth to a scene. Look for situations that are transformed by the position of the sun, like a tree-lined promenade that sings at sunset. Don’t shy away from shooting at night, when beams of light can become subjects in their own right. For example: car headlights that illuminate falling snow. PROJECT RULES: Please add the #WHPfollowthelight hashtag only to photos and videos taken over this weekend and only submit your own visuals to the project. If you include music in your video submissions, please only use music to which you own the rights. Any tagged photo or video taken over the weekend is eligible to be featured next week. Featured photo by @xenichez
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Ed Sheeran (@teddysphotos) is back out there doing what he loves: performing. “This is one of the first times I’ve played these new songs to fans live,” says Ed, who performed new music off his upcoming album “Divide” at an intimate show in New York City. “I like small concerts, and I like big concerts, too. I just like playing.” Tap our profile pic to experience Ed’s event for yourself. 🎸 His new album drops March 3. ➗
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They say one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. For Portuguese artist Artur Bordalo (@b0rdalo_ii), trash is the inspiration for his work, a series of sculptures designed to highlight issues of pollution and waste. Look at the form of one of Artur’s larger-than-life flamingos, bears or skunks, and then look again, but closer. “Damaged bumpers, burnt garbage cans, tires and appliances are just some of the objects that can be identified when you go into detail,” says Artur of the materials he uses, which are found in junkyards, abandoned factories or through corporate recycling programs. “I’m inspired by my life experiences and everything around me — the real world.” Photo by @b0rdalo_ii
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All of Marina Schammler’s (@lightpoem) photos exude coziness. She credits a weekly visit to her local flower market as a source of inspiration — and a welcome a break from everyday stresses. 💐 “When I get home, I tie a beautiful bouquet and enjoy having brought something into the house that will keep me in good spirits,” says the industrial management assistant who lives in Siegburg, Germany. Then, she often heads to the kitchen. Marina started baking as a teenager, and today, she cooks up sweet delights like berry flans, crepes and waffles, artistically arranging them with fresh flowers to create a dreamy setting. “Flowers are an indispensable way of putting coziness, atmosphere and beauty into my pictures,” she says. Discover more stories from the German-speaking community on @instagramde. Photo by @lightpoem
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Becky Margraf’s (@bargraf) personality-packed squares began as part of the #100DayProject, a movement encouraging people to participate in 100 consecutive days of making. Soon after she started, rain clouds pouted, bowls of cereal grinned and breakfast pastries winked. “Taking weird things and making them cute is a cool way to look at the world,” says Becky, who is the community manager of DIY.org. “Anytime I was out in the wild running around San Francisco, I’d look for an object that I thought would be cool to turn into a creature.” Using 30-cent sheets of felt and 60-cent skeins of floss, she sewed her tiny, happy creations in a couple of hours, often finishing them on her commute. “This year was totally crazy — my relationship ended, I got this crazy job promotion and I moved. The squares are almost little diary entries,” says Becky. “It was cool to have something to do on the bus besides stare at a phone.” Photo by @bargraf
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