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Time Magazine’s new cover is both beautiful and terrifying

At first glance, it looks like a beautiful, vibrant landscape complete with ice, forest and mountains. But look a little closer, and Time Magazine’s latest cover illustration becomes a lot more complicated – and terrifying.

This week’s cover (below) features a watercolour painting titled Currents, depicting a landscape made out of global climate change indicators. These graphs create the outline of mountains, trees and more, serving to illustrate “the benefits and costs of human impacts on this planet”. Like many of the best print ads of all time, it’s a surprising and multi-layered design.

Time magazine’s July 20/27 cover (Image credit: Time)

The cover was painted by artist and scientist Jill Pelto, who often incorporates scientific research and data into her watercolour paintings. “It has been a tumultuous year, but underlying currents of positive action are surfacing rapidly,” says Pelto on the magazine’s website. “The reality of this data may be frightening, but there are messages for hope within.”

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