Julia Margaret Cameron was a largely talented, highly intelligent, free-spirited, eccentric, financially comfortable English woman who took up photography as a personal adventure, as she might have taken up philanthropy or rose culture.
Nadar was a writer, a caricaturist, a balloonist, a part-time political activist, a photographer, and a friend of the painters, writers, and intellectuals in Paris during the time of Napoleon III.
Muybridge's most important motion studies were published in 1887 as Animal Locomotion, a collection of 781 plates that described, in sequential frames, human beings and other creatures engaged in diverse characteristic activities.
Timothy H. O'Sullivan was perhaps the best of the Civil War photographers, and he was better still when he went west after the War as photographer for the government explorations.
The picture's true content, however, has to do less with widowhood than with the visual mechanics of picture construction. On these grounds it is a highly sophisticated and challenging picture.
The life and the intention of Eugene Atget are fundamentally unknown to us. A few documented facts and a handful of recollections and legends provide a scant outline of the man.
Stieglitz lived at least three lifetimes as a photographer, each producing a body of work that was formidable and distinct from others.
He was regarded by his acquaintances as no more than a competent commercial photographer. But Bellocq had also had a secret life. After his death a collection of about one hundred plates was discovered in a drawer of his desk.
Much of Hine's work is not a protest but a celebration of people who had nerve, skill, muscle, and tenacity. There is in his pictures little pity and much love and respect for those who were casually called the common people.
Early in his career, perhaps after tiring of prizes that were too easily won, August Sander set for himself a problem that ranks among the most ambitious in the history of photography.
When in 1963 Edward Steichen prepared his autobiography A Life in Photography, he selected 241 of his own pictures to be reproduced. The earliest had been made in 1895, the most recent in 1959. The span of time that they bridged represented over half of the total history of photography.
Cunningham's spectacularly handsome picture remains exciting because it avoids the vacuous predictability that identifies so many of these design-in-mother-nature photographs.
Photography is a matter of eyes, intuition, and intellect. For eyes and intuition, no photographer was ever more richly endowed than Edward Weston.
It is perhaps appropriate to note here that there is no satisfactory and simple definition of the word photography that is not a tautology: e.g., photography is the process by which photographs are made.
In 1917 Paul Strand said that if one were to use photography honestly he must have "a real respect for the thing in front of him," which he would express "through a range of almost infinite tonal values which lie beyond the skill of human hand."
Rodchenko was one of the most important of the modern Russian artists who emerged after the revolution. He was a distinguished avant-garde painter, graphic designer, and photographer during the heady period of the twenties in Russia, when artists' faith in the revolution had not yet seriously eroded.
Perhaps more than any other photographer, Andre Kertesz discovered and demonstrated the special aesthetic of the small camera.
Lartigue was a privileged child, and he made the best of it. From the subjects of his pictures one would assume that the life of his family was dedicated wholly to the pursuit of amusement.
Dorothea Lange was marvelous with sunlight, and she was also marvelous with gesture.
Laszlo Moholy-Nagy possessed one of the liveliest and most versatile minds to come out of the revolution in artistic thinking that occurred in Europe after the First World War.
In 1926 she opened her own portrait studio, and for the next three years photographed with honesty and grace the great and the famous of that Pari's intellectual world.
In the early thirties he set about photographing the night of Paris, especially at its more colorful and more disreputable levels.
Manuel Alvarez Bravo was born in the City of Mexico, behind the cathedral, near the place where the temples of the ancient Mexican gods once stood.
A landscape does not move in the conventional sense, but it changes constantly in other ways, most notably through the agency of light.
Ansel Adams attuned himself more precisely than any photographer before him to a visual understanding of the specific quality of the light that fell on a specific place at a specific moment.
His work constitutes a personal survey of the interior resources of the American tradition, a survey based on a sensibility that found poetry and complexity where most earlier travelers had found only drab statistics or fairy tales.
Nonartists often misunderstand the nature of artistic tradition, and imagine it to be something similar to a fortress, within which eternal verity is protected from the present.
Margaret Bourke-White was one of the most famous and most successful photographers of her time. Her combination of intelligence, talent, ambition, and flexibility made her an ideal contributor to the new group journalism that developed during the thirties.
The photographer of the past generation who has most tellingly pursued this aspect of Stieglitz's thought is Minor White.
Henri Cartier-Bresson has described himself as a photojournalist, a label doubtless no more misleading than any other available.
Ken Domon broke away from this romantic convention, and demonstrated that a clear depiction of the pertinent facts could be more challenging, and more surprising, than another mountain view in the mist.
Robert Doisneau is one of the few whose work has demonstrated that even in a time of large terrors, the ancient weaknesses and sweet venial sins of ordinary individuals have survived.
Harry Callahan's work is an exception, for it draws us ever more insistently inward toward the center of Callahan's private sensibility.
During the early 1940's Helen Levitt made many photographs on the streets of New York. Her photographs were not intended to tell a story or document a social thesis; she worked in poor neighborhoods because there were people there, and a street life that was richly sociable and visually interesting.
In his short life Robert Capa photographed five wars, beginning in Spain in 1936, and finishing in 1954 during the French phase of the Indo-China War, when he stepped on a land mine.
The best fashion photography has often indulged a similar taste for make-believe, and harmless (or almost harmless) mendacity. Irving Penn's simple little picture of a beautiful model in a fancy dress is a masterpiece of the genre.
By the mid-forties it seemed to most talented young photographers that the future of the medium lay with the great new mass magazines.
In a working life less than a decade Diane Arbus effected a profound reconsideration of photography's intensions. Her work turned away from the central concerns of the preceding generation.
Even in the early years of his work as a fashion photographer, Richard Avedon was much interested in motion, or rather in the sense of motion, since his interest was not analytical but hortatory.
The subject matter of Frank's pictures was not in itself shocking. Everyone knew about chromium and plastic luncheonettes, and tailfins and jukeboxes and motels and motorcycles and the rest of it. But no one had accepted without condescension these facts as the basis for a coherent iconography for our time.
Consider Garry Winogrand's picture: so rich in fact and suggestion, and so justly resolved, more complex and more beautiful than the movie that Alfred Hitchcock might derive from it.
And the most talented photographers involved - such as William Klein - extended our sense of what might be meant by a clear photograph.
The only way in which this criticism might in theory be met with reference to Erwitt's photograph would be to claim that the picture demonstrates some general philosophic truth.
It was many years before sophisticated photographers began to pursue with intention the clues that the casual amateur had provided by accident. When the attempt was finally made, it meant the beginning of a new adventure for photography.
When Lee Friedlander made the photograph reproduced here he was playing a kind of game. The game is of undetermined social utility and might on the surface seem almost frivolous.
Josef Koudelka has spent as much as possible of his life as a photographer making pictures of the Romani (Gypsies) of Eastern Europe.
Born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. Tatsuya Sato's artistic background is learning from the people, books & films, local galleries, and nature on the road.