Today we take photography for granted. With our advanced smart phones that can take high definition pictures for us automatically, and the dozens of different picture-sharing websites found on the internet, taking a new photograph just doesn’t seem that impressive.
But photography is relatively new in the timeline of history, and there was once a time when it was the most visually powerful medium in the world. Photography has shown the very best and worst that the human race has to offer, and over the years, we’ve had photographers that dedicated their entire lives to capturing moments that would become part of our world forever.
Ansel Adams is considered the most famous photographer of all time, and is as well known as online blackjack, Starbucks coffee and Michael Jackson. His incredible landscape and nature photos are the stuff of legend. His level of contrast through countless hours spent in a darkroom. Adams was most prominent during the mid 1900’s, where he spent much of his time taking pictures of the American West, and especially of Yosemite National Park. Many of his photos are still reproduced today, and can be found in books, posters, and calendars.
Henri Cartier Bresson
Bresson was born in 1908 in Chaneloup, Seine-et-Marne, and developed a fascination with painting early on in his life, specifically with Surrealism. In 1932, he discovered the Leica, an early camera that he instantly fell in love with. He began a lifelong passion for photography, and displayed his first exhibition at the Julien Levy Gallery in New York City. He later travelled to Europe during World War 2, where he took countless pictures of the atrocities and destruction that had befallen the region as the Nazis waged war.
Robert Capa first gained prominent in 1938 when Picture Post introduced him as the Greatest War Photographer in the world. It was a spread of 26 of his best pictures that he had taken during the Spanish Civil War, and it saw him become a household name. But the photographer hated war, having been born Andre Friedmann and raised to Jewish parents in Budapest in 1913. He was young enough to be driven out his home country by the invading Nazis, settling in Paris in 1933. After meeting Gerda Taro, the two invented the name Robert Capa, which they used to sell his photos. Over the years, Capa met plenty of other artists, including Earnest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso.
Robert Doisneau was a French photographer that had a passion for documenting the daily lives of the people around him. He sought the surreal in the mundane of everyday life, taking pictures of people going about their business, capturing the juxtaposition of human nature. After World War 2 broke out in Europe, Doisneau worked for the resistance creating forged documents, and in 1948 he began working for French Vogue. He later returned to streets of Paris in 1951, where he continued to take pictures of the citizens of the city.