Who are the Mount Rushmore’s of street photography? Who’s made the most impact and influence the genre to what it is today. Below are my selections with a brief spiel….Did I get it correct?
Henri Cartier Bresson – The godfather of street photography who was able to find art in everyday life. If you call yourself a street photographer and haven’t studied or Bresson’s work then please stop here and go do so before continuing on. I do not need to say more about HCB, you can view a more in depth profile here.
Bruce Gilden – Love him or hate him, the controversial and polorizing Bruce “Frickin” Gilden is a legend. His earlier work on Coney Island, Tokyo, and Haiti are prestige. He’s influenced many street photographers over the decades, especially with his up close and in your face approach to street photography. I often refer to his work for inspiration. Gilden’s photos I would say have the most soul, very powerful, and makes you feel something in your gut. Not too many photographers can accomplish that.
Alex Webb – Alex Webb is on another level in my opinion. His breakthrough work in color and adding complex layers is something many of us street photographers could only dream of making. Webb’s photos makes you look once, twice…and makes you observe the entire frame.
Garry Winogrand – This last spot was a tough one for me…Winogrand or William Eggleston. Winogrand or Eggleston, back and forth. If you don’t know, I am a huge Eggleston, he’s really changed my view on what street photography is…he broke and challenged the loose term “street photography”. Through his photography he’s made me appreciate the mundane in society…However, in terms of body of work I would say Winogrand edges out Eggleston. Winogrand’s work is awesome! When I think of the loose term of “Street Photography”, the first photographer that comes to mind is GARRY WINOGRAND. His photos aren’t made of subtle humor, one liners, or of people’s faces…he photographs things happening out in the street, or what I like to say “People Happening”. Winogrand along with HCB do it the best in terms of making the ordinary…extraordinary.