Photographers The Best Photographers of All Time  

Ranker Art
262 votes 58 voters 1.5k views 45 items

List Rules Vote up the greatest photographers of all time.

The world's best photographers do much more than simply take pictures; they tell stories with their images and capture the essence of the people, places, and things they shoot. While some of the greatest to do it are also considered the most influential photographers, the two are not the same. Sure, the best photographers can have an impact on the industry and influence others aspiring to do the same, but these masters of the lens are simply the best to pick up a camera and photograph what they see.

When it comes to a list of the best photographers of all time, a select few instantly come to mind. Ansel Adams, Annie Leibovitz, and Richard Avedon certainly top the list here. However, plenty of other famous photographers have proven themselves to be some of the greatest, whether they primarily shoot fashion, portraits, or the world around them. Regardless of subject matter, these are the greatest photographers to ever pick up a camera. 

Vote up the photographers you think are best, or those who created the best images that stand the test of time. You can also add any that may be missing from the list.

list ordered by

1
18 6
Ansel Adams is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 82 (1902-1984)

2
16 5
Henri Cartier-Bresson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 96 (1908-2004)

3
11 3
Robert Capa is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 41 (1913-1954)

4
11 4
Annie Leibovitz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

5
9 3
Dorothea Lange is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 70 (1895-1965)

6
10 5
Diane Arbus is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 48 (1923-1971)

7
6 2
Eve Arnold is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 100 (1912-2012)

8
6 2
Brassaï is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 85 (1899-1984)

9
7 4
Yousuf Karsh is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 94 (1908-2002)

10
6 3
Brian Duffy is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Brian Duffy Dec. at 77 (1933-2010)

11
6 4
Jerry Uelsmann is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

12
4 2
Richard Avedon is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 81 (1923-2004)

13
3 1
Bill Brandt is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 79 (1904-1983)

14
3 1
Bruce Davidson is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

15
3 2
Patrick Demarchelier is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

16
3 2
Robert Frank is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
age 94

17
2 1
David LaChapelle is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

18
4 4
Larry Burrows is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 45 (1926-1971)

19
4 4
Elliott Erwitt is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time

20
4 4
Jay Maisel is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Jay Maisel age 88

21
2 2
Julia Margaret Cameron is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Julia Margaret Cameron Dec. at 64 (1815-1879)

22
2 2
Cecil Beaton is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Dec. at 76 (1904-1980)

23
2 2
Steve McCurry is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
age 68

24
1 1
Pieter Hugo is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Pieter Hugo age 42

25
1 1
Nadav Kander is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Photographers of All Time
Nadav Kander age 57