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These Surreal Photos Combine Yoga Poses and Plant Elements to Promote Urban Green Spaces

Yoga | Yoga Poses

Step into any studio around the globe, and you’ll immediately see the connection between yoga and the natural world. But this incredible photo set, called “Breathing Life” by Michael O. Snyder, takes this connection to a new level—and brings a whole new meaning to the phrase “Tree Pose!”

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

One with Nature

This gorgeous photo set blends human and plant forms to show the importance of bringing the natural world to our urban lives.

Snyder worked in conjunction with several other Washington D.C. groups—including Washington Parks and People, Independent Pictures, and One Common Unity—to bring this project to fruition.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

Snyder partnered with these particular organizations because of their unified mission: “to breathe life into urban green spaces and connect urban communities to the earth.” These stunning images are a way of advocating for more livable, environmentally sustainable communities in the Washington, D.C. area.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

Snyder also recruited yoga instructors Hawah Kasat and Helena Snyder to pose for the photos, which were taken at Meridian Hill / Malcom X Park in Washington D.C. Together, they performed asanas that were chosen to draw a direct connection between the pose and the natural world.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

Breath as a Metaphor

The photographer uses the yogi’s breath as a metaphor to show how even the simple act of breathing is tied to our environments. The photo set’s title, “Breathing Life,” intends to show just how important it is to incorporate green spaces in urban environments.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda
Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

Each of these surreal photos is completely unique. Some of the images appear infinitely delicate, portraying the human form as a spider’s web of lacy branches.

Others give the complete opposite effect, underscoring the majesty of the human form. In these photos, the yogis’ body is composed of the lush canopy of trees or large rocks, presenting a sense of stability and power.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

Though these images may look like paintings, they really are photographs! Snyder used an in-camera double exposure technique to blend the images of the poses with images of the park.

The effect is stunning: a seamless integration of human and plant forms that’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

Credit: Bored Panda Credit: Bored Panda

You can check out his entire photo project and his other photography here.

Do you love these photos? Tell us what you think in the comments!

Image Credit: Bored Panda

Featured in New York Magazine, The Guardian, and The Washington Post
Featured in the Huffington Post, USA Today, and VOGUE

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