Distinction: I

A short post with a question that has been on my mind for some time now. I’ll just get to the point an ask: Is it possible to identify a landscape photographer from their work alone? Meaning, can you simply look at the images and know which photographer created them?

I genuinely don’t know this answer and have been wanting to write about it. I figured I’d start with asking because maybe I’m missing something that others already know. Are there photographers you can identify by their work? I’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments and I’m sure anyone interested in this would like to see too. I’ll try to post some links as some come to mind in the coming days.

I’ll elaborate on this more next week as I have many thoughts on this issue. And for context of this discussion, I’m not interested in photographers of the past, only current Landscape Photographers.

Thanks and I look forward to continuing this discussion soon.


Update: There seems to be little to no interest in this topic so I’m putting it on hold for now. I assure you this topic IS of interest to me and I’ll have a much more comprehensive post upcoming with multiple examples.

We all know who took this iconic image but there are a few more photographers today than in 1947. Just a few…

8 thoughts on “Distinction: I

  1. Hi Eric. It is a very interesting topic to me. I just did not manage to read it when you posted it that day!

    My thoughts on this are that I think you can indeed identify a photographer by her/his work alone. However, it not always possible. I’ve tested this by blocking from my sight when someone posts an image on IG, FB or even when presented in a gallery. I have confused the name of a photographer thinking it was her/him, when in reality it was someone else and someone that I did not expect to come up with such image/style.

    In addition, we have to deal with our individual skills (or lack of them) both in terms of the artist’s and that of the receiver. I apologize in advance if my words are too strong, but if the work of the artist is just more of the same you see every day, it is obvious that we as an audience we’ll have a difficult time figuring out whose work is that (s/he might be skilled in PS techniques, but a lack of creativity/originality/expressiveness in their messages might be a great hindrance). A similar analysis can be done for the receiver. Some audiences are more sensitive than others, or some pay more attention to the subtleties and differences that make one artist unique from another.

    These are not refined thoughts (I’ve just had one coffee). But there….. the block’s disappearing now LOL.

    Thanks for bringing up this interesting topic. Best!

    Liked by 1 person

      • An insidious question. The first name that comes to mind is Michael Kenna. Then again with such fame he might have a followers who have managed to emulate his style. Maybe that is the true problem. But there are others, e.g. Pearl Blossom Highway by David Hockney, I haven’t yet seen anyone who came even copying his style.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry for taking so long to get back to you on this, I’ll look at the Pearl Blossom Highway, I’ve never heard of it. I think you’re correct about Kenna and other artists of that magnitude. They tend to create very similar “followers” and it can be tough to tell the difference at times. Thanks for the suggestion, I’ll look!


  2. Hi Eric, not sure how much this helps since it’s about a month late, but two photographers came to mind: Max Rive and Alex Burke. I’m sure I couldn’t identify their work with 100% accuracy, but I think I could do pretty well!

    Another photographer that I thought of when I was typing this is Dan Bailey, although the fact that his work is easily identifiable might be more due to the subject matter and perspective (since he shoots the Alaskan mountains during sunrise/sunset from his Cessna) than photographic style.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kyle, sorry for the delayed response! I stepped away from the blog for a while, I apologize. Those are great examples and I’m familiar with both of them. I’ve also heard of Dan Bailey but I’m not as familiar with his work. I may revisit this topic again soon. I find it fascinating but I can see the danger of my thoughts coming off as critical of others so I need to spend some time thinking before I write. I don’t mean to ever call out certain people or isolate people or categorize people (too much). I’ll be writing on this soon I imagine and I thank you for your ideas! I’m even later on responding to you! Hope you’re well, I need to look at your recent work sometime soon! EE


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