LIFE.com asked Instagram users to submit photos taken during August 2011’s Hurricane Irene — and the response included pictures that ranged from dramatic and even chilling to simply and surprisingly beautiful. Here, a selection of our favorites.
These are wonderful images in and of themselves but they remind me of a post of ours about how faux-vintage services such as Instagram are feeding into a sense of nostalgia for the present.
At the time we quoted Nathan Jurgenson who wrote:
Faux-vintage photography, while seemingly banal, helps illustrate larger trends about social media in general. The faux-vintage photo, while getting a lot of attention in this essay, is merely an illustrative example of a larger trend whereby social media increasingly force us to view our present as always a potential documented past.
It’s also interesting that the documentary history of LIFE’s photography is just that, documentary without the filtered artifice that Instagram brings to our photos.
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, along with members of the national security team, receive an update on the mission against Osama bin Laden in the Situation Room of the White House, May 1, 2011. Please note: a classified document seen in this photograph has been obscured. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)