10 Street Photographers Every Photographer Should Know

Street photographer has been a beloved sub-genre of our discipline since cameras became portable enough to do so. Here are ten that every photographer should know.

When I bought my first camera I knew where my interests lay: portraiture. However, there was one area of photography that appeared revered that I didn't "get". I'd seen many street photography images, collections, and videos about it, but I didn't connect with the desire to shoot it or the proposed impact it could have. Then I watched "Bill Cunningham New York".

This was the turning point for me. Not only did it show me how interesting and affecting it can be in both social, political, and artistic senses (particularly fashion for the latter) but it unlocked an interest in the act of taking the images too. Cunningham was concerned with being invisible, which seemed to be a common theme in street photographers I enjoyed. Often, the best street photographers were enigmas in themselves, and watching "Finding Vivian Maier" solidified that for me.

I think that unfortunately, a lot of great street photography isn't appreciated to the fullest during the period its shot, but only some decades later when it becomes of both artistic and historical relevance that it really shows its value.

Which street photographers do you think are some of the best of all time?

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19 Comments

Javier Gutierrez's picture

Truly one of the best presentations I have ever seen on Fstoppers. I love street photography and I am a Winogrand fan. Half the names I recognized and I have 5 more to research to see what I can learn. I do follow your channel on you tube as you are a wonderful narrator and you make a lot of sense. Be blessed, be safe and Thank you,
Javier

https://www.instagram.com/streetvisionla/

Tom Reichner's picture

Robert Baggs said,

"10 Street Photographers Every Photographer Should Know"

I don't understand why you think that I should know these street photographers. I have no interest in street photography, nor the history behind it. I have no interest whatsoever in photographing humans or manmade things.

Why did you say that EVERY photographer should know these 10 people? That doesn't even make sense.

Javier Gutierrez's picture

Wow, Really? It is an article and like most articles it is opinion. Many Street photographers will enjoy this video. A few will not. Street photography is very subjective. It is obviously not for you. Move on. Stick to shooting animals.

Tom Reichner's picture

I think it is a good, informative, and well written article (even thought the topic is not of interest to me). I just have a problem with the semantics of the title that was used.

Tom Pinches's picture

Ha, this is such a weird comment. *sees article that doesn't interest him - complains about the title*. If you're bored, go take some photos!

Tom Reichner's picture

I am not bored. I never said I was bored. I take photos of the wildlife that interests me every chance I get. Don't need any strangers telling me to take photos when taking wildlife photos is what my entire life is all about. I never asked you what I should do with my time, so don't make suggestions. Sheesh!

Jamie Worsfold's picture

Maybe for the same reason that I like looking at wildlife photography even though I'm not a wildlife photographer: because you can always learn from other genres as well as your primary one.

El Dooderino's picture

" I have no interest in street photography"

Then why did you bother to click on the story?

Tom Reichner's picture

Because I wondered why the author thought that I should know street photographers. Unfortunately, he never explained why every photographer should know these guys.

I would like the title of the article to be fulfilled. It never tells us why every photographer should know these street photographers. It is kind of misleading because of this.

I don't have a problem with the article itself. I have a problem with the title that it was given.

Hans J. Nielsen's picture

You are taking it to literally.
It is like me saying; Here are 10 books every man should read, and then go on to tell why I think everyone should read them.
1. It is just my opinion.
2. You don't have to read any of them.
3. I'm not talking about you, when I say every man. It is a metaphor for those who are interested in reading.

Tom Reichner's picture

But the term, "every man:" includes me, because I am a man. So yes, you would be talking about me if you entitled an article that way.

A more accurate title would have been,

"10 street photographers that are worth knowing"

or

"10 street photographers that may inspire you"

The way we word things is extremely important. Semantics make the world go round!

Hans J. Nielsen's picture

"But the term, "every man:" includes me, because I am a man. So yes, you would be talking about me if you entitled an article that way."

And what if you are a woman?

Tom Reichner's picture

Hans J. Nielson asked,

"And what if you are a woman?"

Then I suppose it would depend on what definition of "man" was being used in the title.

I suspect that the author of such a title would probably be using it in accordance to definition number 2.

Javier Gutierrez's picture

Tom, With all due respect, I do understand why you shoot animals. They don't talk back, don't judge or correct you. They just chill and agree with you. You speak the same language and dialect. I get it. Please move on and when ever you see street photography, move past it. It is that simple.

Tom Reichner's picture

I will be the one correcting you:

Animals don't just "chill" when I photograph them. Animals are scared of humans, and feel nervous when I am near them. They want to get away from me, and there is tension because of that. There is no "speaking" or "agreeing" between myself and the animals that I photograph. This is the way it is for everyone who photographs wildlife.

It is not your place to tell me what to do when I see street photography. If I want to move on, I will do so. If I want to discuss it or argue about it, I will do so.

Javier Gutierrez's picture

''Animals are scared of humans, and feel nervous when I am near them.''

Oh I see. I stand corrected. You are simply are an animal bully.

Tom Reichner's picture

Javier,

You seem to be set on having to say something negative about me. I have no idea why. First you insinuate that I am more like an animal than a human, and then when I correct you, you call me an "animal bully."

Why do you say negative things about me? Did I do or say anything to you, personally, that started this attitude of yours against me? Just because you do not like my opinion, or the way I express my ideas here on the forum, does not mean that you should say derogatory things about my character.

Perhaps - just perhaps - you are the one who is acting like a bully here, because you are launching personal attacks just because you don't like my opinions.

Joe Svelnys's picture

Really well done video and fantastic information. I'm still new in my photography journey, and found this quite informative. Personally I have very few Street photos with people; taking shots of strangers still feels weird, awkward, and/or invasive (I'm still at that stage, for street-shots).

Charles Mercier's picture

I've been taking photos for decades and I've always felt that way. New Yorkers don't seem to have our problem! lol