As the world may seem increasingly divided, ongoing displays of compassion can be one of the remaining forces to bring us together. Whether it’s working to lift up those in distress, performing subtle acts of kindness, lending a listening ear, or mentoring an emerging creative voice, empathetic gestures can help elevate our humanity and make the world a better place.

In partnership with CreativeMornings’ September theme, Compassion, we’re looking at various visual representations of this idea.

Explore these 11 photos and illustrations inspired by CreativeMornings’ September theme. Then head over to our curated collection to see the entire set. If you attend your local CreativeMornings this month, you may get to see these images projected on the big screen.

Image by Everett Collection.

Pictured: [1] Image by [2] Image by Koksharov Dmitry. [3] Image by Rob Marmion.

Image by

Pictured: [1] Image by JONATHAN PLEDGER. [2] Image by Tim_Booth.

Image by Tsomka.

Pictured: [1] Image by Dragon Images. [2] Image by Tatjana Kabanova. [3] Image by AppleZoomZoom.

About CreativeMornings: CreativeMornings is a free breakfast event series that connects and celebrates the creative community in 170+ cities worldwide. Morning people convene once a month on a Friday to hear an inspiring talk and meet like-minded individuals. As their Official Partner for Visual Inspiration, Shutterstock provides CreativeMornings with access to vast visual resources and supports their growth worldwide.

Top image by Tatyana Mi.