A Flashy Year of Snapshots Around The World

On any given day, could you say where the most photographs where being snapped around the world? It would be hard to say, except with this new visualization. Using data from around the web, including a healthy dose of imagery from flickr, Triposo has put together a world map that literally flickers with photographic activity. Different countries light up according to their most significant holidays, events and seasons.

Many interesting observations can be made from the animation. Notice for example how the northern outdoors areas, like Sweden and Norway, become much more active in the summer months when they are warm and tourist friendly. Conversely, southern areas like Chile, show the opposite pattern. Another pattern to note, although it is subtle, is the pulsating rhythm of each week. With more people free on the weekends, snapping photos seems like it becomes more active. An anomaly pops up too: on November 30th, the whole world flashes to life. Why? Triposo is looking for the answer, but is guessing that many cameras come from the factory set with the date by default. Check out the images and video below (we recommend watching it in HD), then head to if you want larger images and more explanations of what you’re seeing.

Let’s start off with a bang! Below, the world celebrates New Years day… and probably a lot of cameras have their default date set to January 1st too, making the day appear unrealistically bright with snapshots.

January 6th-7th: “Christmas is celebrated the 7th of January in Orthodox countries like Russia. So at the end of the first week of the year we see Orthodox countries with a lot of flashes. Note that South and Central America are also quite popular; they are not orthodox but they have their Summer holidays.” – Triposo

“The spring festival in China starts late January, in the last week of January and the first week of February a lot of pictures are taken in China.” – Triposo

May 1st: “This is probably the clearest example of all: Labor Day celebrations light up Europe and China in a big way. Who doesn’t want to take a picture of a nice 1st of May Parade? I think we even see some light in North Korea. Japan is also one big flash, but it’s not because of Labor Day. It’s because the Japanese have public holidays on the 29th of April, the 3rd of May and the 4th of May. That’s three public holidays in one week. So they have the whole week off and enjoy the blosoming cherry trees.” – Triposo

May 19th: “Youth Day in Turkey is clearly visible. It’s Youth Day everywhere but the Turks have an extra reason to celebrate. In 1919 on May 19th Ataturk landed in Samsun, which is regarded as the start of the Turkish War of Independence.” – Triposo

July 4th: “Independence day shows intensified activity in the USA. Because there are so many pictures taken in the USA year round the effect is less overpowering than the 1st of May celebrations in China and Russia, but you can still see that the USA lights up. Europe starts to get pretty much filled with flares too and will remain so for two months. Those Europeans have really long Summer holidays…” – Triposo


Benjamin Starr

Benjamin Starr

Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

Promoted Content

Leave a comment

Please be polite. We appreciate that. Your email address will not be published and required fields are marked