I have just finished watching a very inspiring documentary on James Nachtwey, ”War Photographer” and thought to share a few other films which I find very inspiring. Here is the ultimate list of documentaries for photographers! I’ve only added films I managed to watch.
These movies are full length films directly related to photography.
James Nachtwey works to document war and human suffering around the world. It’s difficult to imagine anyone wanting to pursue such a career, and even harder to think of the strength of character that person must possess. Photographers will no doubt find his work painful to view, but there is so much to learn from his commitment to documenting the difficult subjects of life.
Canadian photographer Edward Burtynsky travels the world documenting the effect industry has on landscape. Burtynsky not only documents the physical changes but also shows how people interact with the new landscapes that industry creates. Burtynsky’s work is fascinating, informative, and hauntingly beautiful. Photographers will be certainly be inspired by the skill of composition. Our favorite part of the documentary was actually in the special features where Burtynsky speaks a bit about many of his photographs. An incredible learning experience.
A look at the life and career of one of modern photography’s most famous shooters. From her beginning at Rolling Stone, to her latest work with Vogue, this documentary gives some insight into Annie’s process. The extra features are definitely worth watching, with some great perspectives given by the subjects of her work.Born Into Brothels: Calcutta’s Red Light Kids
When a group of kids are given the opportunity to create photographs with simple point and shoot film cameras, the results are incredible! Despite living and growing up under wildly difficult circumstances each child has such a beautiful personality, and all have a story to tell.
If you’ve looked at architectural photography you’ve likely seen the work of Julius Schulman (or seen the work of photographers inspired by Julius Schulman). Visual Acoustics is an incredible look at this legendary photographer, and his profound impact on the art. Another documentary to inspire photographers in thinking about composition.
I imagine that this documentary did much to inspire the BBC series’ like Planet Earth. This is a film that is so visually impactful, it’s hard to imagine it ever being topped. A must-watch.
William Eggleston In The Real World
An interesting look at the American photographer, William Eggleston. The ability to hear his thought process as he scouts a location, and how he finds interest in everyday scenes is fantastic.