11 animal portraits that will inspire you to get back to nature.

Brad Wilson takes fine art portraits of wild animals.

Isolated in front of a dark backdrop and illuminated with soft lights, Wilson's stunning portraits are deceptively simple, but deeply striking.

His series, "Affinity" explores humans' relationship (or lack thereof) with the natural world.


All photos by Brad Wilson, used with permission.

Wanna get closer to nature? Start with 11 of Wilson's jaw-dropping photos and wild facts about these majestic animals.

1. You'll never be short on conversation, as baboons use at least 10 different sounds to communicate with their troops.

This baboon enjoys climbing, running, and talking about your favorite competition-based reality shows.

2. Mountain lions, pumas, and cougars are all the same species and go by many different names.

Not only does this mountain lion have kind eyes, it knows the entire Keith Sweat catalog.

One of those names? Ghost cat. Don't be surprised if she stops answering your texts.

3. Did you know mandrills sleep in a different tree each evening?

This mandrill is working on contouring. Does it show?

4. The palm cockatoo's beak is uniquely shaped and quite large, making them especially adept at cracking big nuts ... if you're into that kind of thing.

This black palm cockatoo just got out of a long relationship and is just looking for a good time.

5. The golden tiger is the same species as a Bengal tiger, but with rare coloring.

This golden tiger is here to dance and eat boar, and he's all out of boar.

Their fur is often thicker and softer than other tigers. Take that, other tigers.

6. Chimpanzees usually travel on all fours but they can walk up to a mile on two legs.

This chimpanzee doesn't mind that you still can't pronounce quinoa right on the first try.

No word on whether they will walk 500 more to fall down at your door.

7. Contrary to every cartoon, elephants do not like peanuts.

This elephant has big ears, and a bigger heart.

They do not eat them in the wild and keepers do not feed them to elephants in captivity. If you need to treat an elephant, stick to flowers ... or pumpkins.

8. Barn owls swallow their food whole and cough up the fur and bones.

Who's that with the soft feathers and great anecdotes for first dates? It's this barn owl.

Not much else to say about that.

9. This long-legged serval can jump up to 10 feet in the air.

This serval may look small, but this tiny cat has nine lives, and he's using every one to hang out with you.

The serval is native to more than 35 African countries and is found mostly in savannas.

10. Lorikeet tongues end in a kind of hairy brush, which helps them get nectar from deep inside flowers.

This brightly colored rainbow lorikeet did not come to play with you, parrots. She came to slay.

(At least that's what they're telling ornithologists.)

11. This white-lipped tree viper is most comfortable in trees, but some people are bold enough to try to keep them as pets.

This white-lipped tree viper might seem dangerous — and she is. Especially if you talk shit about her friends.

Beware, however, as the wise prophets Bell Biv Devoe once said: That girl is poiiiiiiiison. Never trust a forked tongue and a smile.

Wilson's remarkable photos are a beautiful reminder to appreciate the natural world and the animals we share the planet with.

Wilson hopes that his images "remind us, despite the pronounced feeling of isolation that too often characterizes our contemporary existence, that we are not alone, we are not separate — we are part of a beautifully rich and interconnected diversity of life."

We live on this planet with some pretty amazing creatures. It's our responsibility to protect and celebrate them.

True

In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

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Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

Who would have thought that giving the world access to all human knowledge via the internet, the ability to follow and hear from experts on any subject via social media, and the ability to see what's happening anywhere in the world via smartphones with cameras would result in a terrifying percentage of the population believing and spouting nothing but falsehoods day in and day out?

Those of us who value facts, reason, and rational thought have found ourselves at some of our fellow citizens and thinking, "Really? THIS is how you choose to use the greatest tool humanity has ever created? To spew unfounded conspiracy theories?"

It's a marvel, truly.

Between Coronavirus/Bill Gates/5G conspiracies and QAnon/Evil Cabal/Pedophile conspiracies, I thought we were pretty much full up on kooky for 2020. But apparently not. The massive fires up and down the West Coast have ignited even more conspiracy theories, some of which local law enforcement and even the FBI have had to debunk.

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True

In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

1 / 12

Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

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On September 14, Charles "Chuck" Feeney signed the paperwork to shut down Atlantic Philanthropies. The ceremony was attended via Zoom by the philanthropies' board which included former California Governor Jerry Brown, Bill Gates, and Nancy Pelosi.

While most would think the shuttering of a philanthropic endeavor would be a sad event, it was just how Feeney planned. It marked the competition of four-decade mission to give away almost every penny of his $8 billion fortune.

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Katie Neeves (L) photo by Jayne Walsh, JK Rowling (R) photo by Sjhill, CC BY-SA 3.0

Dear JK Rowling,

I am writing this letter to say a big thank you to you. You may think it strange that a gobby trans woman such as me would wish to thank you after all your recent transphobic outpourings, but let me explain…

I certainly don't thank you for your lengthy essay last month where you describe the abuse you have suffered (for which you have my sympathy) and in which you stated that you do not hate trans people, while at the same time peddling even more anti-trans mis-information. Sadly, your diatribe directly caused some trans children to self-harm and other to attempt suicide.

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