Some of The Most Powerful Photos of 2022
2022 was a significant year, some would say it was the year we officially got over the Covid-19 virus, however, there were also a lot of important events happening all over the world. There was a lot of change, we lost some important figures, there were a lot of joyful moments, and we even witnessed the 2022 Olympics. The great thing about today's day and age is we have the power of photography to capture it all and in a way, relive those moments. As this year comes to an end, it is the perfect time to take a trip down memory lane and check out some of the most powerful photos of 2022.
Firefighters working on a forest fire in Spain
Captured in this photo are some Spanish Firefighters fighting to control a forest fire before it got out of control. The fire was fanned by shifting winds after it broke out close to a village where roughly 2,000 people live in Spain’s Pontevedra province.
The fire crews could only get the fire under control after many long hours of fighting it, but not before it had charred about 250 acres of forest territory. The work of the crews was also made complicated by the constantly shifting winds that made things harder for everyone.
Workers at an open-pit mine in DRC
Pictured here is an open-pit mine that is run by COMAKAT, an artisanal mining cooperative in southern DRC. The workers here were busy digging out cobalt ore and copper from the mine.
Cobalt has become a critical commodity in the global energy transition since it is a key component of electric car batteries and other rechargeable batteries. The production of this precious mineral is a complicated one but Congo’s small-scale and artisanal mines are filling the void nicely despite their subpar environmental and human rights record.
The vandalized office of Gotabaya Rajapaksa in July 2022
News that protesters had invaded the official residence of Gotabaya Rajapaksa rang alarm bells across the globe because such an invasion had never been recorded before. This picture presents a nice general view of the condition of Rajapaksa’s official residence in Colombo during the invasion by thousands of protesters, who got there via various modes of transport.
The Sri Lankans reached their breaking point thanks to rising prices and severe fuel shortages. In the end, the Sri Lankan President agreed to resign.
Kenyan wildlife workers rescuing a Giraffe
If you didn’t already know it, poaching has become one of the biggest threats to the existence of wildlife as we know it in Africa. These individuals target select animals mostly for their tusks or other valuable body parts, but in some cases, meat is the only inspiration.
In this case, some poachers had set up a snare that this giraffe got caught up in, and it is quite likely the animal wouldn’t have made it if it hadn’t been rescued and sedated. We are glad these workers found it, as preserving such majestic wildlife should be our top priority.
Ukrainians crowd under a destroyed bridge
In this remarkable picture from the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukrainians crowd themselves under a bridge that had been destroyed as they attempt to cross the Irpin river. The bridge had been destroyed after it came under fire by a Russian air strike.
This spot became a gathering spot for a sea of Ukrainians in wheelbarrows and on foot as they tried to evacuate. The town was on the frontline between the Ukrainian and Russian forces for a while and as a result, artillery damage and air strikes had destroyed many residential buildings, bridges, and roads.
The first image of Galaxy Cluster SMACS 0723
This remarkable image is one of the first pictures from NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, and it shows the galaxy cluster SMACS 0723. According to reports, the composite shot of the Galaxy Cluster was compiled in roughly 12.5 hours, and it was released in a White House briefing by President Biden.
Thanks to the James Webb Space Telescope, the most powerful telescope in orbit, our view of the far-away cosmos won’t be the same anymore. This right here is the clearest image of the early universe we’ve ever seen.
Chaotic scene from downtown Tehran
This picture from downtown Tehran, Iran paints a picture of some chaotic scenes as women protesters ran from the anti-riot policemen that had flocked to the scene of their protest of the death of a young lady that had died while being detained for flouting the conservative dress code for women in the country.
Videos showing the anti-riot police assaulting female protesters erupted on social media, causing widespread fury against them. These protests were the biggest the country had witnessed since the gas price hikes in 2019.
Serena Williams video monitor tribute
After announcing her imminent retirement from tennis, everyone suddenly realized the 2022 US Open might be the last time we see one of the most remarkable tennis players compete for the title.
Therefore, not too many people were surprised when she was seen on a video monitor tribute after winning her second-round match against Anett Kontaveit in New York. The video tribute celebrated her years of dedication to tennis and her final matches as it played at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Cadets undergoing a lesson in a bomb shelter
This remarkable image captured the moment cadets in a cadet lyceum in Kyiv, Ukraine practiced an emergency situation. The children are no strangers to the heavy rubber gas masks on the wooden desks. In the country, children are sent to the weekday boarding school to be taught discipline and skills necessary for survival.
Scenes on the streets of London on September 9th
The death of Queen Elizabeth II caused thousands of mourners to flock to Buckingham Palace to pay their respects. She was the longest-serving monarch in UK history, and she died in Balmoral, Scotland after ruling for nearly eight decades.
Amid concerns for her worsening health, her family had gathered at her Scottish estate on Thursday. They were joined by members of the public following the official announcement of her death. The crowds gathered and floral tributes were laid for the dead monarch.
Patrick Jackson and his daughter Leila Jackson at Confirmation Hearings
Patrick Jackson, the husband of Supreme Court nominee Kentaji Brown Jackson, looks on with his daughter, Leila Jackson, during confirmation hearings in Washington, in March 2022. This image has been touted as the most iconic from Kentaji Brown Jackson’s confirmation hearings, and it is one of the most widely viewed images as well.
It was captured by Sarahbeth Maney, an Oakland native whose picture has resonated widely and deeply with several people across the world. Both Jackson and his daughter Leila are focused on her mother, and both are apparently admiring her, as they should.
Mourners at the Uvalde School Shooting Memorial
In this stunning picture, mourners gathered to visit the memorial of the victims of the Uvalde school shooting in the town square in Uvalde, Texas. A total of 21 people, including 19 students and two teachers were killed when a gunman invaded Robb Elementary School in May.
The city of Uvalde set up memorials in the Uvalde Town Square and at Robb Elementary School as well, and people get to visit and pay their respects as they mourn the unfortunate 21 lives that were lost. We love how parts of the image have been sped up to show the movement of attendees.
Emergency workers and concerned citizens help victims of a Halloween stampede
On October 29, 2022, a crowd crush happened during Halloween festivities and activities in the Itaewon district of Seoul, South Korea. According to estimates, about 158 people were killed, and another 196 were injured with most of the victims being young adults.
This incident was the deadliest crowd crush in South Korea since the MV Sewol was sunk in 2014. It was also the biggest mass casualty event in the South Korean capital since the 1995 Sampoong Department Store collapse.
Nahua people celebrate the Maiz
Mexico’s modern Nahua people and communities are known for their agricultural production. Some of their staple foods are corn, chili peppers, squash, tomatoes, and beans. The Nahua are the largest Native American group in modern Mexico, thanks to the roughly 1 to 1.5 million people that speak Nahuatl or one of its many dialects.
A field covered with craters
Pictured here is a field covered with craters in the aftermath of shelling. The field lies close to Izium, Kharkiv region, Ukraine. The city of Izium in the Kharkiv region was the site of some war horrors as over 400 bodies were found in a mass burial site there.
While Ukraine’s counteroffensive in the northeast grabbed all the headlines thanks to some success that indicated a turning point in the conflict, conversations were also held about the scale of devastation and destruction left behind by the Russian forces.
Peter Lyoya tosses a flower into his son’s grave
In this remarkably emotional picture, Peter Lyoya, father of Patrick Lyoya, an unarmed black male that was fatally shot and killed by a Grand Rapids Police officer during a traffic stop in April tosses a flower into his son’s grave. Patrick was killed after a physical encounter with an officer.
Lyoya had been pulled over for improper registration before the confrontation broke out. The officer reportedly tased the victim twice even though they both struggled over the taser. At the end of the day, he was killed over a minor mistake.
A demonstrator blocks an access route in Iquique, Chile
During a regional strike called by multiple organizations against illegal migration in January 2022, a demonstrator took matters into his own hands and blocked an access route to Iquique, Chile while sitting under an umbrella.
Iquique, which lies in the north of Chile, and close to the border with Bolivia, recorded several days of agitation and blockades at several entrance roads as people protested against the rising crime rate associated with increasing illegal migration. This is just one of many chaotic pictures from the protests.
Victim of a mortar attack
During their occupation of Bucha, it turns out the Russian forces committed a host of war crimes. The town lies roughly 30 kilometers northwest of the capital of Kyiv. Researchers that worked in the town after the Russian forces withdrew found lots of evidence of unlawful killings, summary executions, torture, and more.
In this picture, a victim of a mortar attack lay dead in her kitchen. Hers is just one of many cases of the Russian contempt and disregard for life in the territories they occupied.
Staff of one of the biggest abortion clinics in the US
A day of confusion, dread, and dismay was captured in this picture of Nina and Priscilla, both staff of the Houston Women’s Clinic, the biggest abortion provider in the city.
Their priceless reaction is captured as they immediately reacted to the news of the Supreme Court’s decision to overrule Roe v. Wade, and reverse the constitutional right to abortion of American women in June. Both women had worked at the Women’s Clinic for nearly twenty years, so naturally, they received the news with some dismay.
Damaged silos in the 2020 Beirut Blast
A fire burned inside silos as their grain contents fermented. Lots of grain silos toppled in Beirut port after they succumbed to the damage from the devastating 2020 explosion in Beirut.
The entire port was covered in a cloud of dust after the silos collapsed, and that brought down the final of the northern block of silos that had sustained heavy damage under the blast and from the subsequent fire that had been burning for weeks. The bulk of the impact of the huge explosion was absorbed by the silos.
Rescuers silent tribute for victims of the China Eastern Airlines plane crash
On March 21, 2022, a Boeing 737 passenger plane crashed in Guangxi, South China around 2:21 pm. There were 132 people on board, and they were all confirmed dead. Two black boxes were recovered and sent to Beijing for analysis and decoding.
On March 27, a memorial event was held at the crash site to mourn the deaths of the 132 victims. The sound of horns played out across the mountainous area around 2 p.m., and all members of the national emergency response team stood in silence for three minutes.
Father of teenager cries on son’s body
In this heart-wrenching photo from Ukraine, Serhii, the father of teenager Iliya cries on his son’s dead body at a maternity hospital that had been converted to a medical ward. Iliya got injured while playing soccer in Mariupol; shelling suddenly started there in the midst of the Russian invasion, and the injuries he sustained would prove fatal.
The darkening skies in Mariupol were lightened up by shelling as heavy fighting continued on the city’s outskirts. Most phone services were knocked out by the battle as well.
Activists rally outside the US Supreme Court
Protesters and pro-choice and anti-abortion activists rallied under the "off our bodies" slogan in different cities across the US. They marched to demand that abortion rights be protected after there were rumblings that the historic 1973 Roe v. Wade decision might be overturned.
In New York City alone, thousands of people came out for an abortion-rights rally that turned out to be one of the biggest demonstrations in the midst of the social and political upheaval the country witnessed in the period.
Russian soldier sentenced in Ukraine
In August, a Ukrainian court sentenced a Russian soldier to 10 years in jail after he was found guilty of violating the customs and laws of war by firing a tank at what was really just an apartment block.
Mikhail Kulikov, who was captured during the fighting, was found guilty of hitting the apartment building on Feb.26, roughly two days after Ukraine had been invaded by Russia. Mikhail was the second Russian soldier to be convicted in Ukraine since the invasion began.
Anti-Government coca farmers march on the capital
In September 2022, coca growers marched to protest a new parallel coca market. Thousands of coca farmers showed up to march into La Paz, the Bolivian capital, where they proceeded to set what they claimed was an illegal new market ablaze.
The anti-government growers marched for five days from the Yungas region that lies north of La Paz before managing to break through police lines and attack with Molotov cocktails, firecrackers, and dynamite. The country’s coca sector is politicized and it had been in disagreement over the legal market in La Paz.
Students in a parking lot close to the Central Visual and Performing Arts High School
Some even had to jump from the windows and run out of the school to safety. The shooter was noticed by onsite security officials while struggling to enter the locked doors, and the students were warned by the principal through a codeword.
Children play on a destroyed Russian tank
In this remarkable picture, a couple of children pose on a destroyed Russian tank that was on display in Kyiv as the war wreckage became a center of celebrations of sorts for the onlookers. A junkyard of burned and rusted Russian tanks, as well as armored military vehicles, sit in the background of St. Michael’s Golden Monastery.
Millions of adolescents and children were plunged into a new reality of roadblocks, shelling, and curfews by Putin’s invasion of Ukraine so it’s only right that they celebrate his fallen war equipment.
Dead body covered with a shawl in Kabul
All over the hillside overlooking Kabul, hundreds of men, completely high on opium, meth, and heroin can be found with some lying in the dirt and others in tents. You can also find bodies of overdosed dogs around, and the dogs themselves hang around because they sometimes get some of the drugs.
Afghanistan is the biggest producer of heroin and opium in the world so drug addiction has been a big problem here for years. The addicts are fueled by endless poverty as a result of years of war.
French President Emmanuel Macron at his first campaign meeting
In April 2022, French President and the candidate of the liberal party, La Republique en Marche, Emmanuel Macron arrived at his first campaign meeting at the Paris La Defense Arena on the outskirts of Paris.
Macron had confirmed his bid for reelection to the French public in a 1,000-word letter that had been published on the regional daily press websites. Macron had been distracted by the war in Ukraine so he announced his reelection bid at the last moment.
Two women dip their heads in the fountain at Trafalgar Square, London
The UK recorded some of its hottest days ever in July, causing Londoners to seek various ways to keep cool. Pedestrians in the city generally proceeded to Trafalgar Square during the heatwave as temperatures in the UK exceeded 40 celsius for the first time ever.
Against this backdrop, it’s not altogether surprising to find the two women dipping their heads into the fountain at Trafalgar Square in a desperate attempt to stay cool. #WeatherAware trended as temperatures still climbed in many places.
Locals at a makeshift memorial in Downtown Uvalde
The city civic center witnessed the gathering of families as they awaited news about their children after the elementary school shooting at Uvalde. The dozens of families gathered there waited for hours for the worst kind of news to be delivered following the deadliest school shooting in the history of modern Texas.
The symbolic building where they gathered was the reunification center for families of students that were evacuated from Robb Elementary School after a shooter killed at least 19 children and two adults.
Bombed grain silo with burning grain inside
This picture paints a typical picture of Russia’s military objective of taking control, damaging, and destroying the grain storage facilities of Ukraine. This has been a policy since the invasion began in February, and the implication is that one in six Ukrainian storage facilities that store sunflowers, barley, wheat, and other staples have been lost to Russia.
The situation threatens severe food shortages that might have global implications if left unchecked. In addition, exports from Ukraine have been drastically affected by the invasion.
An unveiled protester in Kurdistan
Pictured here is an unveiled Iranian woman standing on a vehicle while thousands of protesters made their way to the Aichi cemetery in the western Iranian province of Kurdistan.
They were there to mark 40 days since the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old that had died after she was arrested for flouting the sharia-based hijab headscarf law that had made the hijab compulsory for all Iranian women since 1983. The protesters in this picture were openly defying the increased security measures targeted at smothering the women-led protest.
The control room at MSNBC’s Studio in New York City
Pictured here is the control room at MSNBC’s studio in New York City on June 9. The picture was taken during the first public hearing that preceded the House committee that investigated the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol.
As the house committee that investigated the attack told its story to Americans, viewers heard from the Capitol Police officer that was seriously injured in the attack, and a filmmaker that was with the Proud Boys during the attack.
Blood on a lawn in Kazakhstan
The protests were inspired by increased fuel prices at first but they quickly became anti-government protests, and the Russian government had to intervene. In this image, we see blood on a curbside lawn in the aftermath of the violent protests.
Israeli police confront mourners at Al Jazeera funeral
The funeral of slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh featured some dramatic scenes as Israeli police officers charged the Palestinian mourners that carried the coffin.
Abu Akleh had covered the middle east conflict for over 25 years before she was shot dead during a raid on the West Bank town of Jenin by the Israeli military. Thousands would eventually lead her casket through the Old City of Jerusalem in an outrage of anger and grief over the killing of the journalist.
Schoolchildren at a concert rehearsal
Pictured here are schoolchildren at a concert rehearsal held at the house of culture in Petrovskyi District, Donetsk, Ukraine. The curious thing about the school, and the rehearsal, is the 2014 frontline was only a couple of miles away.
It paints a typical picture of life in Russia-occupied Ukraine as there appeared to be an undermining of every aspect of living for the civilians in Ukraine since Russia’s invasion commenced. Russia apparently has a school curriculum that it attempts to impose on Ukraine.
Fans celebrate the 2022 World Cup countdown
The teams, the fans, and the players have all gotten to experience a unique stage at the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The Official Countdown Clock for the World Cup was unveiled in November 2021 to celebrate the festival being a year away.
In this picture, some fans celebrate the final countdown to the World Cup before the start of the World Cup opening match that was held between Ecuador and Qatar at the Corniche Promenade in Doha. The Countdown Clock now stands on Doha’s Corniche.
Queen Elizabeth’s coffin in the State hearse
This remarkable moment was captured from a television broadcast, and it shows the moment Queen Elizabeth’s coffin lay in the State Hearse, being driven past the crowds that lined the road with Prince George to Windsor. Leaders from around the world attended the state funeral of England’s longest-serving monarch, who died after seven decades on the throne.
The long procession went past official buildings in Whitehall, past Downing Street, and through the avenue that heads to Buckingham Palace. The funeral was also watched by an expansive audience on TV.
Fog rolls through the Golden Gate Bridge
In this picture, an elusive fog rainbow was captured on camera close to San Francisco. The phenomenon occurs when light shines through a water prism in a raincloud, forming a rainbow that shines every distinct light hue.
A San Francisco resident captured the phenomenon north of the Golden Gate bridge during a hike with a companion. The friends saw the light streaks and took a picture from about 75 to 100 yards away, and the picture was posted on Twitter. The misty air is pierced by streaming haloes of light.
Charon Reed and her son, Koda
Charon Reed holds on to her son, Koda, while crying at her grandmother’s funeral in Buffalo, New York. She was one of the 10 victims of a racist massacre at a grocery store.
Part of the attack was live-streamed by the shooter on Twitch but then the service shut down the live stream in less than two minutes. According to reports, the shooter, Gendron, wrote a manifesto in which he declared himself a white supremacy supporter and also described how inspired he was to commit political violence.
Civilians on an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Ukraine
Evacuation trains have become a beacon of hope for the people fleeing the war in Ukraine. Thousands of people have been taken to safer regions from the Pokrovsk city railway station in the Donetsk region.
The evacuation train is the only rail service in the Donetsk Oblast that conveys civilians to safer regions of Ukraine every evening. Citizens are prohibited from taking buses because of the war, and they’re only allowed to move by train. The best part for the Ukrainians is the train service is free.
Sphynx cats that reside in a Soon Book Café in Cheonan, South Korea
Korea’s Cheonan city has lots of famous and extraordinary cafes for Instagram and your taste buds. The entire country is known for its sumptuous cafes so this comes as no surprise, a vibrant café culture has been a big part of the identity of Korea as cafes can be found everywhere in the country.
These aren’t just regular cafes either, they’re themed ones in big cities like Seoul and Busan. There are also animal-themed cafes like this hairless cat café, where the cats are housed in an enclosed area where they roam.
Donald Trump and his wife, Melania pay their respects
Pictured here is former US President Donald Trump, along with his wife Melania, his sons Baron and Donald Jr., and his daughter Ivanka as they all departed the St. Vincent Ferrer Church during Ivana Trump’s funeral. They all looked on solemnly as Ivana’s casket was conveyed into the church for the afternoon service.
The family accessed the church through a side door as the service was characterized by the presence of security officials. Beyond Trump’s influence as a businessman, Ivana also enjoyed a successful independent business career.
Ukrainian soldiers attended to some wounded Ukrainians
Here we see the heart-warming moment some Ukrainian soldiers attend to a couple of civilians, including Tetiana Perebynis and her kids. The family had gotten seriously wounded after a round of Russian mortar shelling had struck them while they were attempting to flee from Irpin, Ukraine.
Tetiana Perebyinis was an avid skier and dedicated gardener that had just gotten back from a ski trip to Georgia before the invasion began. A volunteer that was helping her family out was also killed.
Campaign posters for Angolan President Joao Lourenco on palm trees in Luanda
It’s safe to say the current Angolan President Joao Lourenco gets a lot of support from Angolan women. They were a major force in his reelection bid, and likewise, Lourenco and his wife dedicated themselves to addressing issues that plague Angolan women, and they also promised to increase the leadership positions held by women in the country.
Lourenco’s party, the MPLA, managed to win despite a lot of excitement in the ranks of the opposition, as well as high levels of frustration and despair among the youth.
Beto O’Rourke disrupts Governor Greg Abbott’s press conference
Former Rep. and the Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Beto O’Rourke, disrupted a press conference from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on the Uvalde shooting. The former rep shouted at the governor before he was ushered away from the auditorium.
He was enraged because he thought Abbott and other key leaders had given a predictable response to the shooting, and that none of them had done anything to restrict the easy access to guns that plagued American communities. He was eventually ushered out of the building by law enforcement officers on the order of the Governor.
An exhausted man and child take a breather
This picture of an exhausted man and child resting in the Darien Gap touches you deeply. Their plight is sad because at this point in their journey, they still have about a week of walking ahead to cross the 66-mile jungle terrain between Panama and Columbia.
In the past ten months, roughly 32,500 children have made the journey across Panama’s jungle in a desperate attempt to reach the US. Both children and their families are exposed to different forms of violence, including the risk of trafficking, sexual abuse and exploitation. There’s also the risk of attack from wild animals and insects.
A Golden Retriever gets groomed before the 146th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Show
The 146th Westminster Dog Show was a Trumpet show as Trumpet the Bloodhound won best in show after winning the hound group. The dog emerged from a difficult group of fellow champions to win the top prize, it was the first time that a bloodhound would claim the top prize as well.
Curiously, the dog didn’t have much to say when it posed in front of a slew of ribbons and a huge silver cup in the regular post-victory shot. In the picture above, we see a Golden Retriever get groomed before competing in the show.
Faith groups and activists pictured through a Donald Trump sticker
Far-right activists have given a spirited fight against government-imposed coronavirus restrictions from the jump. These activists manage to rally supporters to embark on protests against vaccine mandates and other nagging issues related to the virus.
In this picture, the faith groups and activists are shown through a sticker of Donald Trump while they protest against the restrictions and mandates across the nation. It paints a picture of the underlying politics that sometimes fuel protests like the Defeat the Mandates American Homecoming event.