Martin Beck’s Superheroes Aren’t Who You’d Expect

Martin Beck Superheroes Photography

Source: Daily Mail

Close your eyes for a moment and picture a superhero. If you’re anything like me, you probably didn’t imagine a mechanic working on a car or a pregnant woman chowing down on a dozen doughnuts. Instead, you likely envisioned a strong, fit individual—most likely a white male—in a Marvel-inspired costume that lacked a single stain or wrinkle.

It was this exact, immaculately-composed superhero ideal that photographer Martin Beck wanted to dismantle when he came up with the idea for “We Can Be Heroes”. In the gallery below, each photo portrays someone ordinary–it could be your local grocer or an elderly couple slumped into the couch–in superhero garb that’s worn and dirty:

In addition to capturing the Hulk in a speedo, Martin Beck is a Scottish and South African photographer who has a hand in many different industries: fashion, music, art, and rock ‘n’ roll, to name a few. While he’s worked with companies like Bloomingdales and Harpers India, it’s the amusing and motivational photo series like “We Can Be Heroes” that has really catapulted him into Internet stardom.

Whether they’re ironing clothes or having tea on the couch, Beck’s superheros often find themselves in mundane routines that catch viewers off guard. These juxtapositions give the entire series a light, playful feel, while also underscoring the truth that all of us, in our own way, can and do save lives. According to Beck, “Everyone is a superhero.”

Children At The Anlong Pi Dump Face Horrendous Conditions

Each year, millions of tourists gather in Cambodia’s Siem Reap province to visit the Angkor Wat temple. Built as a spiritual home for the Hindu god Vishnu, the UNESCO World Heritage Site is an archaeological triumph that offers scholars an intimate look at Cambodia’s past. Yet alongside the beautiful temples and flashy tourist magnets, a much darker world exists. Let us introduce you to the Anlong Pi dump, a toxic landfill where poor men, women and children must scavenge for recyclable materials every day:

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Cambodia Kids Work at Dump

Source: Weather

Anglong Pi Dump Cambodia

Source: Publico

Children at Anlong Pi

Source: Omar Havana

Children at Anlong Pi Wasteland

Source: Daily Mail

Evening at Anlong Pi

Source: IB Times

Anlong Pi Dump Residents

Source: IB Times

Women Work in Cambodian Dump

Source: Omar Havana

Encampment at Anlong Pi

Source: IB Times

Kids Scavenge at Anlong Pi

Source: IB Times

Anlong Pi Dump Horrific Conditions

Source: Jovial Mum

Children Sea of Trash

Source: Omar Havana

Siem Reap Cambodia

Source: Publico

Cambodian Girl and Teddy Bear

Source: Aljazeera

Toxic Conditions at Anlong Pi Dump

Source: Omar Havana

Child Laborers Near Cambodia

Source: IB Times

Tourists Gawk at Anlong Pi

A Japanese tourist reels from the stench of the landfill. Source: Daily Mail

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The Rise Of Pakistan’s Makeshift Amusement Parks

Pakistan amusement parks motorcycle

A motorcycle acrobat thrills the crowd at an amusement park set up outside a shrine in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. IMAGE: MUHAMMED MUHEISEN/ASSOCIATED PRESS Source: Mashable

Embroiled in conflict since at least 1947, when Great Britain partitioned British India to create the independent nations of India and Pakistan, the latter can hardly be considered the world’s happiest place. And yet, these photos by Pulitzer Prize-winning Associated Press photographer Muhammed Muheisen present a photographic foil to such a grim reality.

Pakistan amusement parks night

Food vendors set up shop to keep visitors fed at a park in Islamabad, Pakistan. IMAGE: MUHAMMED MUHEISEN/ASSOCIATED PRESS Source: Mashable

Over the past several years, people living in the outskirts of Rawalpindi and Islamabad have come up with a way to temporarily break the fear and add some joy to the lives of Pakistani children, and their parents: makeshift amusement parks.

Pakistan amusement parks horse

A boy walking his horse while he checks out a Rawalpindi park. IMAGE: MUHAMMED MUHEISEN/ASSOCIATED PRESS Source: Mashable

Over 400 amusement parks dot the United States landscape, and another 300 are scattered across Europe. In Pakistan, however, most children do not have the luxury of visiting such parks. In the Middle East and Southeast Asia, amusement parks are scarce, and the ones that do exist are far too expensive for most families to enjoy.

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