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Influential Photographs: Terra Nova (1911) by Herbert George Ponting

The biting cold alone is a worthy opponent for any foolhardy man but it has claimed lives of even the most seasoned explorers. Photographer Herbert Ponting brought back images of the famed ship Terra Nova as it cut through the icy seas during the Antarctic Exploration race of the 1900s.

Mother Nature has a way of showcasing creations with amazing beauty but this same beauty is paired with equal parts of lethal force. Herbert George Ponting’s photographs from the Terra Nova expedition showed exactly that.

The famed ship Terra Nova that ferried Robert Falcon Scott in his Antarctic expedition was captured in a perfect frame of ice and sleet. Ponting’s image is but one of the many enduring images of the biting cold and the men who braved it. Photographing the expedition with his cinematograph, Ponting was able to document the harsh realities of the unforgiving terrain.

Photo by Herbert Ponting via Mother Nature Network

Robert Scott along with 4 of his loyal companions pushed for the South Pole only to see a flag planted there by Norwegian Roald Amundsen who first reached it on January 17, 1912. Scott and his team were taken by the bitter cold on the way back to the supply depot. Scott left these words among many before he succumbed to the extreme cold:

“Had we lived, I should have had a tale to tell of the hardihood, endurance, and courage of my companions which would have stirred the heart of every Englishman.”

All information used in this article were sourced from Mother Nature Network, Live Science and Wikipedia – Herbert George Ponting and Robert Falcon Scott.

Our intention with the Influential Photographs columns is not to glorify or demean the subject of the photo. Our intention with this column is to highlight the most influential analogue photographs of history. The photographs we feature are considered icons, for their composition, subject matter, or avant-garde artistic value.

written by cheeo

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