50 Leading Photographers in History- Wikipedia
One of the most widely-known photographers, Adams was a
conservationist and an artist with a camera. His photos of Yosemite,
the Southwestern US and portraits are equalled only by the techniques
that he pioneered.
Her controversial portraiture looked beyond the superficial and into
her subjects often troubled souls. But her magazine work show she
could have a split personality.
His up close, show-every-hair-follicle approach to portraiture can be
jarring, but his ability to render both his and his sitters'
personalities in each image he creates is uncanny.
An innovative, influential fashion photographer.
Photographer of all things Tibetan, including the Dalai Lama.
One of the original Life magazine staff photographers,
Bourke-White was a pioneer in both photojournalism and womens' work
roles. Her images of World War II--especially the liberation of
concentration camps--were deceptively simple. Her images would often
be the perfect combination of fact and beauty.
His portraits and Paris street photos are touching and perceptive.
The father of Photo Reportage and co-founder of the legendary Magnum
photo agency, "HC-B" has influenced generations of photojournalists,
documentary photographers and street photographers. Influenced and
inspired by classical and impressionist art and freed by the
portability of the Leica, HC-B changed the way we look at the world
The founder of the Talking Heads points his camera at the kind of
bizarre incongruities you could write a song about.
Cunningham's carreer spanned the first three quarters of the 20th
century photographed many of her subjects draped in exotic clothes in
images with moral themes and tableaux representing works of poets.
Later nudes were shocking for their time, but rather tame now.
Curtis built an illustrius carreer documenting Native Americans in
the 1900s. The images resonate 100 years later.
A street photographer whose decisive moments are imbued with
warmth, feeling and wit, Diosneau's work reveals the fragile moments
of urban existance.
A bullet through an apple. A droplet of milk that looks like a crown.
A punctured balloon in mid-explosion. These are just a few of the
famous images by "Doc" Edgerton, the pioneer of high-speed
A perceptive street photographer with a sharp sense of humor, a
sensitivity to the human condition, and an affinity for dogs. It is
almost impossible to be depressed after looking at his work!
Frank's The Americans is a seminal development in the history of
photography. He cris-crossed the US in the mid-50's and produced a
collection of subjective images that showed the dark side of the
nation that was supposedly in the midst of a socio-economic boom. To
quote Jack Kerouack speaking directly to Robert Frank in the intro:
"You Got Eyes."
Evans Quintisential American photography from the first half
of the 20th century. Evans influenced a generation with his forceful
images of a lonely country.
The ultimate children's photographer. Her colorful, whimsical images
leave you wondering how she got those infants to pose like that.
Gibson's high-contrast, minimalist black and white compositions have
influenced a generation of photographers. By isolating the essential
elements of a scene, his pictures show a style that is unique and
By championing the cause of poor immigrants, child laborers and other
downtrodden folks through his powerfully straightforward photos,
Lewis Hine showed us how the "Other Half" lived. His passionate
photographs enlightened the world and brought about legislation that
has protected millions since his work appeared in the early 20th
Some photographers have been described as poets with a camera.
Ginsberg was the real thing.
During Hollywood's Golden Era, publicity photos had the power to make
or break stars. George Hurrell, who perfected the "glamour" portrait,
was the most sought after glamour photographer by the big names and
Kertesz used the camera to transform the chaos of the street into
lyrical scenes. A brilliant, influential teacher and artist.
His brief involvement with photography yielded an influential
body of work that has been called confrontational and immediate. They
seem to be a furious protest against the establishment.
Uncompromising and bold, the images are mostly street photos that
stare when others would avert their gaze. He almost dares you to look
A protege of Carter-Bresson, the first printing of Koudelka's book
about Gypsies is a collector's item. Koudelka's documentary photos
highlight the dignity of Eastern Europe's Gypsies, despite their
often squalid living conditions.
A rising star on the celebrity portrait scene, Lachapelle's photos of
Drew Barrymore, Jim Carrey, k.d. lang and the Beastie Boys has earned
him accolades from American Photo magazine and others. His first book
is a showcase of his impressive talents.
Best known for her famous photos of the Depression, including Migrant
Mother, Nipomo, California, Lange was active from the 1920s to the
early 1960s and was one of the most influential photographers in
One of today's most influential and admired artists, renowned for her
vivid and distinctive style, Annie Leibovitz is an American original
and a master of self-promotion. Her portraits of Bruce Springsteen,
Jody Foster, Michael Jackson, Miles Davis, Greg Louganis, Mikhail
Baryshnikov, John Lennon and more combine a keen eye with a quick
His sometimes graphic homo-erotic photos challenged the established
morality of the times, but his flower photos were considerably less
controversial works that showed a subtle genious unencumbered by the
baggage of his more infamous work. His Flowers collection, photos
taken as he was dying of AIDS, is a symbolic look at life, death and
Joel Meyerowitz is a master of the color image. His exquisitely
printed collections include his lyrical landscapes and detailed
portraiture that share an autobiographical feel, and a strong sense
Misrach's technically perfect images portray American landscapes that
have seen the heavy hand of developers, the military and polluters.
The serene, understated approach Misrach often employs lies in stark
contrast to the ecological damage his work depicts.
A member of the avante-garde Bauhaus movement, this
artist/photographer/ theoretician's images anticipate the
deconstructivist and post-modernist art movements of toady.
His early work showed a remarkable mastery of large format
photography in situations where one would expect to see 35mm cameras;
his portrait work includes a series on four sisters taken over a
15-year period and images of people with AIDS.
A Russian photographer whose strong graphic work was rarely seen
outside the Soviet Union until after the Iron Curtain was torn down.
This landscape photographer's images of American national parks
and the southwest celebrate the country's primal beauty through
magical patterns of light and form.
From big nudes to portraits of Elizabeth Taylor and Salvador
Dali, Newton has been on the cutting edge of fashion and glamour.
From Madonna to Jack Nicholson to William Burroughs, Herb Ritts has
photographed the most famours--and notorious--faces of our time. His
Notorious collection showcases his best celebrity shots, while Africa
offers a bold departure: photos of the people and landscape of the
African continent that will be a revalation to his fans.
Master nature photographer and teacher Galen Rowell's work
presents the splendor of the world's natural beauty. As a columnist
for Outdoor Photographer, Rowell has produced a prolific output of
writing and images that will help a new generation of photographers
to create the kind of interperative, adventure-filled images that
Rowell is famous for.
A photojournalist in the best sense of the word, Sebasiao Salgado
is fascinated with people who work hard in all parts of the world.
From landless workers trying to claim property for themselves in
Brazil to Oil workers putting out fires in Kuwait, Salgado's lens
captures the beauty in his subjects' gritty reality.
A consumate craftsman and teacher, John Sexton offers tactile
fine black and white nature imagery that utilizes the Zone System and
large format for crisp, beautiful work. Sexton focuses the Desert
Southwest US, using creative printing techniques to create uniquely
expressive results. Sexton runs numerous workshops to share his
knowledge with up-and-coming photographers.
Sherman uses photography as a tool to manipulate images of women that
have been spawned by popular culture, with herself as the leading
character in most of the images she creates.
A premier master of photojournalism, Smith passionately believed in
the integrity of his subjects and the photographs that portrayed
them. From his staged "Walk to Paradise Garden" to his graphic images
of World War II and damning photos of the human tragedy brought on by
industrial pollution at Minamata, Smith produced some of the most
memorable images of his day.
As the curator of the photo collection for the New York Museum of
Modern Art, Steichen was the man behind The Family Of Man, a late
1950's photo exhibition and recently-republished book that was a
watershed in the history of photography because it gave photography
mass appeal as an expressive, fine art. His curatorship brought about
a grand era for "Concerned" photography.
One of the great art-world arbiters of the 20th century,
Stieglitz gained recognition for photography as a fine art and
introduced the European avant-garde to America. A leader in the
controversial Pictorialist movement, he offered a mix of literal and
interperative images. He moved in a brilliant circle of artists and
intellectuals and was the husband of Georgia O'Keeffe.
A white picket fence. A poor Adirondac family. Paul Strand's pure
vision and uncompromising technique gained him international
accolades as a master of American photography, especially in the
1950s. His black and white photos are exquisite and memorable.
Before there was Photoshop, there was Uelsmann. His enigmatic,
surrealist collection darkroom combinations defy categorization. It
is their mystery that has stumped critics and kept his fans coming
back for more.
A crime news photographer in the 30s and 40s in New York, Weegee
is possibly the most well known street photographer. Crude and
direct, his photos have an immediacy and impact that affect the
viewer to this day. His later work, distorted portraits that he
called "photo charicatures", have a similar in-your-face quality.
A man and his dogs: Wegman, who started out as a painter, is best
known for photographs of his dogs. Man Ray, then Fay Ray and her pups
have posed for Wegman in a variety of often humorous and very
human-like settings. His photographs are a tribute to the ultimate
partnership between a man and his dogs.
Weston's immaculately constructed images imbue forms of common
objects with a sensuality that transcends the subject. Sharp,
detailed and rich in tonality, his closeups, nudes and nature
photographs brought the power of photography as an objective tool of
observation to new heights. You'll never look at a pepper quite the
same way again.
A teacher as well as a photographer, Minor White crafted works of
beauty that were also explorations of his inner self. His best known
work was made of the natural wonders in the American West. He
experimented with alternative processes, non-narrative sequences and
techniques that would stretch the bounds of photography.
Few living photographers are as consistently controversial and
provocative as Joel-Peter Witkin, whose work elicits hostility and
admiration in equal measure. Shocking and compelling, the photographs
in this retrospective collection reach to the outer limits of human
nature. Voted least likely to be invited to photograph childrens'
birthday parties by Modern Photography in 1989.
GETTING THE SHOT