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27 Most Well-known Portrait Photographers (Previous & Current)

Studying from the work of well-known portrait photographers will help you to move from making good images to creating artistic endeavors.

On this checklist, you’ll discover a combination of well-known portrait photographers from previous and current to get you impressed.

(This isn’t, in fact, a complete checklist, however it’s a very good start line!)

Should you’re wanting to get to know a few of the most influential portrait photographers on the planet, let’s get began.

Prime 27 Most Well-known Portrait Photographers Ever

1. Annie Leibovitz

Annie Leibovitz is amongst essentially the most well-known portrait photographers on the planet.

She began working for Rolling Stone journal in 1970, and since then, she’s photographed many well-known folks from the music enterprise, television stars, politicians, and many others.

One among her most well-known portrait images is the considered one of John Lennon in mattress with Yoko Ono achieved a number of hours earlier than Lennon’s homicide.

Annie Leibovitz continues to be lively, and he or she teaches a web based Masterclass, in case you’re eager about studying from one of the well-known photographers within the discipline.

2. Arnold Newman

Arnold Newman, White Home Press Workplace (WHPO), Public area, by way of Wikimedia Commons

Arnold Newman was a proficient portrait photographer who studied drawing and portray. In 1946, he relocated to New York, and he began working as a photographer for well-known magazines resembling Fortune, Newsweek and Life.

His environmental portraits in black and white are the extra well-known, particularly his well-known portrait of Stravinsky, which, by the way in which, was rejected by Harper’s Bazaar, who had commissioned the job.

3. David Bailey

David Bailey is likely one of the most well-known portrait photographers on the planet. His distinctive type consists of dramatic lighting and naked backgrounds.

Bailey’s well-known works embrace portraits of many celebrities in addition to portraits and behind the scenes reportages from the style world.

4. Eugene Korman

Higher often called Gene Korman primarily labored in Hollywood and the film business, Eugene was taking nonetheless images for movies resembling Scarface or making glamour portrait pictures for stars as huge as Marilyn Monroe.

Actually, his stills for the film Niagara have been the bottom for Andy Warhol’s Marilyn’s collection of portraits – iconic for the pop artwork motion.

5. Steve McCurry

Steve McCurry is a journey and documentary photographer who’s most well-known for his Nationwide Geographic work.

Throughout his travels, he makes essentially the most exceptional environmental portraits – together with the well-known Afghan Lady.

He has two World Press Picture prizes and the Royal Photographic Society’s Centenary Medal, amongst his a number of awards.

6. Pete Souza

Regardless of being a proficient skilled photographer since 1998, he turned one of the well-known portrait photographers for his work capturing former US president Barack Obama.

Souza additionally labored as chief official White Home photographer throughout the presidency of Ronald Reagan. Each durations gave him the possibility to {photograph} a few of the most outstanding world leaders at work.

Presently, he makes use of his photographic expertise to {photograph} each celebrities in addition to landscapes. You possibly can try his diversified work on his Instagram account.

7. Yousuf Karsh

Yousuf Karsh in a studio, BiblioArchives / LibraryArchives, CC BY by way of Wikimedia Commons

Yousuf Karsh is an Armenian-Canadian portrait photographer who immortalized folks as well-known as Albert Einstein or Winston Churchill.

He photographed ‘anybody who was anybody’ and claimed that he selected this ‘exceptional cross-section of individuals’ for his personal immortality.

He definitely achieved his objective, as he is likely one of the most well-known portrait photographers of the twentieth century.

8. Richard Avedon

Richard Avedon exhibition in Berlin. Credit score: Shervin Afshar (Flickr), CC BY-SA 2.0 by way of Wikimedia Commons

Richard Avedon was an American trend photographer who revolutionized the sphere. As an alternative of fashions as a model, they turned individuals with feelings in Avedon’s portraits.

Except for the style world, Richard Avedon utilized his expertise and pictures expertise to make socially and politically charged black and white portraits.

He photographed activists and civil rights staff in his studio and went out within the streets to seize protesters of the Vietnam Conflict, the autumn of the Berlin Wall, and many others.

One other mission that turned iconic was American West, the place he exhibited large-format portraits of miners, cowboys, and many others. – these have been later printed as a best-selling guide.

9. Gustave Le Grey

Gustave Le Grey, Selfportrait, Daguerreotype, 1848, Public area by way of Wikimedia Commons

Le Grey was a Nineteenth-century French photographer skilled initially as a painter. He obtained eager about pictures in 1847, doing his first daguerrotypes.

His portraits of Giuseppe Garibaldi gave him fame all through Europe.

Le Grey additionally taught pictures and made some technical improvements resembling including wax to paper negatives, doing mixed printing and collaborating to invent the moist collodion technique.

10. Diane Arbus

Diane Arbus is likely one of the most well-known American portrait photographers, and he or she was the primary photographer to be included within the Venice Biennale in 1972.

Her work has a signature type although she made noticeable technical adjustments all through her profession, which mirrored a shift in idea and imaginative and prescient.

Her alternative of topics can be a degree of recognition of her work as she did portraits of marginalized teams in addition to women and men who would partially or completely cowl their id with the usage of make-up and masks.

Many photographers on the planet credit score some extent of affect from the work of Diane Arbus – she is acknowledged as a ‘seminal determine’ of contemporary pictures.

11. Dorothea Lange

Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mom, Public area by way of Wikimedia Commons

Dorothea Lange was a well-known portrait photographer with a documentary and photojournalist strategy. She’s primarily recognized for her well-known portrait Migrant Mom.

This portrait and a big portion of her work have been achieved whereas she travelled the midwest and southwest to doc the consequences of the Nice Melancholy.

These journeys have been funded by the Roosevelt administration, who employed numerous artists, amongst which Dorothea Lange, to doc the individuals who have been imagined to obtain assist with the New Deal.

Lange additionally co-founded the journal Aperture in 1952 – a quarterly journal specialised in pictures as superb artwork that’s nonetheless operating.

In 1945 she began educating superb artwork pictures on the California Faculty of Superb Arts by invitation of Ansel Adams.

12. Phil Borges

Phil Borges is a superb photographer and documentary filmmaker who makes use of storytelling to lift consciousness and create social change.

Inside portrait pictures, he stands out for his pictures of indigenous folks. Borges is a a number of award winner, and his work has been exhibited all through the world.

He runs many non-profit applications to assist make a constructive cultural change. The mission Girls Empowered highlights extraordinary girls that thrive regardless of gender inequality, and his latest program Crazywise goals to deliver consciousness and respect to psychological sickness and Shamanic practices.

13. Brandon Stanton

Stanton is knowledgeable portrait photographer who positive aspects fame by photographing folks of New York Metropolis for his mission People of New York.

He began in 2010 photographing 10,000 New Yorkers residing out of unemployment checks. The mission moved to a Fb web page the place he began including quotes and later interviews together with his topics.

By 2013, the mission turned a in style pictures guide, and over 30,000 copies have been pre-ordered.

The guide ranked #1 on the New York Instances Non-Fiction Finest Sellers; Stanton was named in Time’s “30 Underneath 30 Individuals Altering the World”, and now he is likely one of the most well-known portrait photographers on the planet.

14. Stephan Gladieu

Stephan Gladieu is a well-known portrait photographer who’s been overlaying warfare and social points since 1989. For considered one of his most famous tasks, he documented the folks of North Korea.

Regardless of the constraints and limitations, he captured portraits that mirror his standpoint and illustrate the human situation.

In response to the bio on his web site, he’s presently extra devoted to his private analysis and tasks: a “human story all through colourfully portrait assortment”. He’s additionally nonetheless performing some worldwide portraits for magazines and journalistic actions.

15. Lee Jeffries

Historically talking, Lee Jeffries is a portrait photographer – nonetheless, he describes himself as a non secular photographer.

He began taking images of bicycles for his personal enterprise at 35 years of age. To struggle his loneliness, he began going out and photographing homeless folks.

He doesn’t simply {photograph} them; he talks to them and creates a connection – that’s why they’re such highly effective pictures.

16. David Lachapelle

David Lachapelle is an American portrait photographer well-known for his iconic portraits filled with symbolism, references to artwork historical past and saturated colours.

His signature type separates him from different photographers within the discipline and places him within the realm of superb artwork pictures. Because of this, a number of museums and galleries world wide have exhibited his work.

17. Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman is an artist greatest recognized for the social commentary made by way of portrait pictures utilizing herself because the mannequin.

She doesn’t think about them self-portraits as a result of she transforms herself into completely different personas – the truth that it’s her physique is solely a sensible matter.

Together with her works, Sherman has mirrored upon id building, gender stereotypes, and different cultural codes. Most not too long ago, she’s utilizing Instagram to discover visible illustration utilizing filters, picture enhancing apps and social media.

18. Michael Coyne

Michael Coyne is likely one of the well-known photographers that work on project for publications as essential as Nationwide Geographic and Lonely Planet.

His greatest portraits come from documentary pictures and photojournalism tasks achieved world wide and have been compiled in several books.

He additionally has a how-to guide known as Lonely Planet – Individuals Images, the place he shares his 25 years of expertise to information you and assist you take higher images.

19. Ken Reagan

Ken Reagan was one of many nice portrait photographers in historical past. He had the expertise to seize the second and inform a narrative by way of his portraits.

He was printed by many magazines, together with Rolling Stone, who named him considered one of their Seven Masters in Images.

He additionally gained a number of awards, and his work has been exhibited in museums and galleries all around the globe, together with Washington’s Nationwide Portrait Gallery – whose assortment holds 5 of Reagan’s works.

20. Bruce Gilden

Gilden is an American photographer who’s most well-known as a result of he photographed folks within the streets utilizing a flash.

Most photographers attempt to move unnoticed when doing avenue pictures, however not Bruce Gilden – that’s why his close-up portraits make him one of many best-known portrait photographers of our technology.

21. Helmut Newton

Helmut Newton, Portrait of Laurel Martyn, 1952, Public area by way of Wikimedia Commons

Helmut Newton is taken into account among the finest portrait photographers on the planet. He began as a trend photographer – the place he instantly stood out together with his provocative and progressive type.

Within the Eighties, he began working with Self-importance Honest and have become extra eager about making portraits of the highly effective and well-known.

22. Alec Soth

Soth is a documentary photographer who’s made beautiful portraits “involved with the mythologies and oddities that proliferate America’s disconnected communities”.

He’s been a Magnum member since 2008 and has been awarded a number of fellowships and exhibited in museums and public collections world wide. He additionally has a publishing firm known as Little Brown Mushroom.

23. Nick Knight

Nick Knight is likely one of the most well-known portrait photographers within the trend business in addition to a video and movie director. In 2000 he based SHOWstudio.

Since 2001 he began doing music movies collaborating with Bjork, Girl Gaga, amongst others. Knight’s seek for innovation ranges from lighting strategies to the usage of multimedia.

Nonetheless, he’s by no means given up portrait pictures – for instance, in 2016, he was known as to {photograph} the royal household on the Queen’s ninetieth birthday.

24. Mario Testino

Mario Testino is likely one of the most well-known portrait photographers within the trend business. Outdoors of the style world, he’s very eager about exploring and documenting cultural heritage.

Along with his mission Alta Moda, he targeted on his native Peruvian tradition, whereas he devoted the collection A Lovely World to different cultures.

25. Manfred Baumann

Whereas Baumann is named among the finest portrait photographers, he’s additionally very proficient in panorama pictures – most not too long ago utilizing drones.

His work has been printed and exhibited a number of occasions and has obtained many awards. He additionally teaches for the Leica Academy worldwide.

26. Philippe Halsman

Dali Atomicus, Philippe Halsman, CC BY-SA 2.0 by way of Wikimedia Commons

Halsman turned one of the well-known portrait photographers on the planet due to his surreal collaborations with Salvador Dali.

He’s additionally recognized for photographing most of his topics leaping. This fashion, he may seize an ‘unguarded second’. Amongst a few of the most well-known, you’ll find Marilyn Monroe, Brigitte Bardot and Edward Steichen.

27. Jonathan Mannion

Mannion began because the assistant of Richard Avedon and later unfold his wings as one of the well-known portrait photographers within the music enterprise.

He’s achieved over 300 album covers, and he shares many behind-the-scenes moments in his Instagram feed.

Last Phrases

Out of all essentially the most well-known portrait photographers on the planet, this checklist consists of a lot of my favourites – I hope you loved it.

I’d like to know which portrait photographers you embrace in your checklist of ‘one of the best’ – please tell us within the feedback under!

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