35 Beautiful Photography Websites

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Interest in photography has exploded over the last 10 years, largely thanks to the developments in digital photography. Cameras and computers have become cheaper and more powerful, software more sophistocated and printers can now print photos that are as good (if not better) than anything produced in a chemical darkroom. Now, once you’ve acquired a digital setup, the economic restrictions of film and development costs have been removed and the cost of photography is virtually nil.

Along with these developments in photography has been the parallel development of the Web. Ten years ago websites were largely clumsy, HTML driven constructions. Today, contemporary photographers have powerful tools such as Flash, WordPress and DreamWeaverwith which to develop their websites. Photographers can also sell their work through companies such as PhotoShelter or ImageKind, and through photo libraries such as Alamy and iStockPhoto, opening up new revenue streams.

The result is that photographers are finding new and exciting ways to showcase their best work online. We took a look at some of the beautiful photography websites that we could find, analyzing the design trends and the reasons why these websites work.

You may want to take a look at the following related posts:

Beautiful Photography Websites

Bottle Bell Photography5
The graphic design of this website perfectly complements the fantasy world of the photographer’s vision.

Beautiful Photography Website6

Daniel Kennedy Photography7
Top class professional photography presented in a simple to navigate, beautiful website.

Beautiful Photography Website8

East Photographic9
An unusual site because it belongs to an agency rather than a single photographer.

Beautiful Photography Website10

Jason Bell11
The website of world renown celebrity photographer Jason Bell. Yes, that’s Mickey Rourke on the front page.

Beautiful Photography Website12

Jeffery Salter13
Simple and effective design.

Beautiful Photography Website14

Jill Greenberg15
A beautiful website from a master photographer. The photos are big, bold and colourful.

Beautiful Photography Website16

Jonathan Glynn Smith17
A dramatic splash screen and beautifully minimalist design.

Beautiful Photography Website18

Kim Mendoza19
This website shows off the work of social photographer Kim Mendoza. The music is a nice touch, what visitor fail to be convinced of this photographer’s talent?

Beautiful Photography Website20

Levon Biss21
All the drama and explosive action of sports photography.

Beautiful Photography Website22

Rankin23
A bold and colourful design from one of the UK’s foremost fashion and editorial photographers.

Beautiful Photography Website24

Steve McCurry25
The warm colours of this website are unusual, and make the website stand out.

Beautiful Photography Website26

Footnotes

  1. 1 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/03/12/showcase-of-beautiful-fashion-websites/
  2. 2 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/02/09/movie-website-designs-examples-and-current-practices/
  3. 3 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/05/03/captivating-winery-websites-for-your-inspiration/
  4. 4 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/04/23/30-beautiful-real-estate-websites/
  5. 5 http://www.bottlebellphotography.com/
  6. 6 http://www.bottlebellphotography.com/
  7. 7 http://www.danielkennedy.com/
  8. 8 http://www.danielkennedy.com/
  9. 9 http://www.eastphotographic.com/#/newwork/5
  10. 10 http://www.eastphotographic.com/#/newwork/5
  11. 11 http://www.jasonbellphoto.com/#/home/
  12. 12 http://www.jasonbellphoto.com/#/home/
  13. 13 http://www.jefferysalter.com
  14. 14 http://www.jefferysalter.com
  15. 15 http://www.manipulator.com/
  16. 16 http://www.manipulator.com/
  17. 17 http://www.jonathanglynnsmith.com/JGS.html
  18. 18 http://www.jonathanglynnsmith.com/JGS.html
  19. 19 http://www.kmendozaphoto.com/index2.php
  20. 20 http://www.kmendozaphoto.com/index2.php
  21. 21 http://www.levonbiss.com/
  22. 22 http://www.levonbiss.com/
  23. 23 http://www.rankin.co.uk/
  24. 24 http://www.rankin.co.uk/
  25. 25 http://www.stevemccurry.com/main.php
  26. 26 http://www.stevemccurry.com/main.php

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Andrew Gibson is a photographer and writer. He runs Magical Places Fine Art, an online photography magazine and another great photography resource.

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  1. 1

    That was a great article, just for the photographs alone.

    2
  2. 2

    Great inspiration for both, photos and presentation! Thank you!

    -1
  3. 3

    It’s rather easy actually to make beautiful photography sites, as long as you have beautiful photo’s that is…

    Some nice ones, indeed…

    1
  4. 4

    Amazing photos!

    -1
  5. 5

    Great designs!

    -4
  6. 6

    spit or swallow

    July 10, 2009 5:57 am

    Absolutely fab!

    -1
  7. 7

    this is the special one http://www.virgilioferreira.com/

    0
  8. 8

    I really enjoy this list. Thank you so much!

    -1
  9. 9

    Terrible, will be selling my camera ASAP.
    I feel depressed after seeing those poor images.
    So cliched. Where has all the talent gone?

    -8
  10. 10

    What has happened to photography? What’s with all the naked or near-naked women?

    -2
  11. 11

    The same overprocessed photography everywhere. So sad…

    0
  12. 12

    Steve McCurry’s website is stunning… and he’s also my favorite photographer ever.

    Here’s another one: ;)

    3
  13. 13

    Very nice sites. One of my faves is

    1
  14. 14

    Juan Manuel Lemus

    July 10, 2009 9:33 am

    I have a photoblog of photography and designs. If you want, you can visite in: Jaixm.com

    -2
  15. 15

    Thanks for a great set of inspiring sites, and inspiring photographers to boot. You guys are truly a great part of the creative world. Keep on Rockin’!

    1
  16. 16

    I think simplicity in design is key. here’s one that I like… <a annietaoblog.com

    -1
  17. 17

    These websites are stunning but there’s some fundamentals here that seem to have been missed.

    You seem to have chosen photographers that are quite well established (photographing the stars) and this lets the designer onf each of these sites to let the images do the talking with very little insight in terms of readable content.

    There’s a layer of photographers underneath these guys that is a very saturated market and this market is what I cater for. It’s much more of a challenge to balance large, beautiful images with content that has to be search engine friendly in order for these photographers to be found. This market is more aimed it Wedding and Lifestyle photographers than the fashion/glamour end!

    I’m not saying these aren’t great sites because they’re but there’s a lot of other photography websites out there that contain a lot more search engine friendly content yet still have great visual appeal.

    We could all produce sites like this if the photographers are well established!

    0
    • 18

      I definitely have to agree, and was the first thing that came to mind. I am also a photographer and though big, bold pictures are great when you are already well known, and no longer need to build and explain why a client should choose you then filling a web site with larger photos is the way to go, however like you said these web sites are a small percentage that actually represent the overall picture of photographers. I am competing with the studio down the road or the next town/city over – or who is listed in the yellow pages. Not photographers to the stars and National Geographic. There are some great ideas but no one is necessarily the right one for everyone. Each web site needs to represent the style and personality of that individual photographer – whatever type of photography it may be.

      0
  18. 19

    I see why you put Bottle Bell first.
    It’s simply amazing.

    0
  19. 20

    hm, not as usual, many layouts in this article aren’t as beautiful as I expected.

    0
  20. 21

    I partly agree with Christopher Anderton’s points with regards to usage of Flash. But with many advancement made, most of his points have remedies or techniques to overcome such disadvantages.

    Slow loading, heavy on cpu?
    Its all in the optimization. The basic of all is to optimize your assets (images) in photoshop. Modularize your Flash file, so that not all sections are loaded at the same time. Optimize you Actionscript code too! And it will really help in the long run. And convert to AS3.0

    Very often they are hard to navigate, tiny presentation of the photo?
    That is where an Interactive Media Designer comes in and plan out the storyboard and figure out the flow of content. Web Designer got to work hand in hand with the Web Developer guys (Interactive developer, Programmer or whatever we are called by).

    SEO?
    Yeaaaaap… this i got to agree with you. Flash got a bit of prob with SEO. It is possible to overcome. IT IS NOT IMPOSSIBLE. It IS possible. Furthurmore, if you read Google’s blog, they posted an interesting article on 30th Jun 2008 that reads, “Google learns to crawl Flash”.

    Tracking, Google Analytics?
    If you read Google’s Analytics blog, they posted an article that reads, “Want to track Adobe Flash? Now you can!” dated 17th Nov 2008. Even before Nov 2008, developers have been developing their own techniques of tracking without GA’s official tracking code for Flash.

    I know this is not a HTML vs Flash article. But hey what-the-hell.. Just my two cents worth I would like to share :)

    Anyway thanks Christopher Anderton for the points that he mentioned. To some extent they are still valid. Especially abt SEO.. Flash is still a pain in the butt when it comes to SEO :)

    -1
  21. 22

    Chris Phelps
    um, that apple looks badly photoshopped. why would i hire that guy?!

    0
  22. 23

    Great list, thanks. I’ve always been interested in presenting a Flash-like site using HTML/CSS/JavaScript for my own work (I won’t link-whore, but search for my name plus “photography” and you’ll find me). I’ll find lots of good inspiration from this list, a definite keeper for my next web-makeover.

    0
  23. 24

    Christopher Anderton

    July 10, 2009 5:47 pm

    What’s up with all the FLASH based sites? One photographer i talked to said that it was to “protect the images easier”. I told him that making a screenshot selection on my Mac is taking faster than actually right click and save an image.

    The problems with the flash based sites most photographers use is:

    – Slow loading
    – Heavy on the CPU even on newer computers
    – Most of them just shows a tiny presentation of the photo, with no option to enlarge the picture
    – Very often they are hard to navigate
    – If it’s just a presentation of the photographers work given out to clients, and there are no considirations of SEO, ease of use and other things often described as “Web 2.0″ features. Why the hell not just upload images on a FTP directory, or just save them as a Photoshop Flash (uhh) web gallery? Why even bother to hire a designer?

    Maybe kind of harsh, but you get the picture.

    0
  24. 25

    another great collection nice Photogrphy

    -2
  25. 26

    You missed this fantastic one too:

    0
  26. 27

    Tejendra Shandilya

    July 11, 2009 2:25 am

    AWESOME

    0
  27. 28

    Timonthy De Brander

    July 11, 2009 2:37 am

    Photography in full screen, but what if it become video of high quality! , Well this site is cooler I think : moopa.be/ !!! What do you think? :p

    0
  28. 29

    The Nonsense Society

    July 11, 2009 3:36 am

    Very unique work. Chris Phelps is incredible.

    0
  29. 30

    Check this one by a local Omaha guy….

    0
  30. 31

    yes that nice , thank you Smashing Magazine , you rock design web sites really you the best web site in the whole world in design and cool minds

    0
  31. 32

    Christopher Prins

    July 11, 2009 5:36 pm

    Absolutely sensational work, most of them. Thank you for sharing with us.
    Kind Regards,
    Christopher.

    0
  32. 33

    I was marveling at some of the amazing sites then got to the bottom and there was mine (in the last-click saloon) – I am very honoured and privileged to be here, so many thanks for that.

    Andrew

    0
  33. 34

    Great roundup. Check out the first site though. It says: “Gallery optimized for Internet Explorer”. Ouch!

    0
  34. 35

    Here’s one I like:

    0
  35. 36

    So much good stuff!

    0
  36. 37

    Amazing Photographs… Thx

    0
  37. 38

    thanks a lot, amazing website!

    0
  38. 39

    Thank you for sharing with us. They are all strikingly beautful.

    0
  39. 40

    Daniel Kennedy is great

    0
  40. 41

    goog web sites thanks

    0
  41. 42

    This website is amazing loved it! :)

    0
  42. 43

    If you want to look at some stunning aerial photography, take a look at the websites for Adriel Heisey’s, Jayson Hawkes, Cameron Davidson, George Steinmetz and Yann Arthus-Betrand. Big images and simple designs.

    -3
  43. 44

    The Vincent LaForet web site is a template provided and hosted by NeonSky in North Carolina. The Chase Jarvis site is also a template site, his provider is Livebooks. Same site that hundreds of other photographers currently use to promote themselves. I know of at least six other photographers who use Livebooks and four who use NeonSky.

    Another provider of well designed template sites is FolioLink and of course, Rob Haggart’s company, a photofolio. Check out aphotofolio’s site to see some sweet designs that work very well.

    0
  44. 45

    I LOVVEE all the art work on this page!! so COOL!!

    0
  45. 46

    Great collection of some very professional and awesome photography. Some great web-programming I may add as well! Thanks for putting this together.

    1
  46. 47

    Ok I find how to already -they place the intructions :)

    0
  47. 48

    the ar the best

    0
  48. 49

    The site is way too busy…..too much writing on this site.

    0
  49. 50

    vijayaragavan india

    September 4, 2010 6:27 am

    nice Design very helping for me thans

    1
  50. 51

    Wow…. Great post

    I dont know what else to say

    1

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