Capturing the Urban Condition


Inspirational Urban Photography


“A city is more than a place in space. It is a drama in time.” – Patrick Geddes

Our cities are a microcosm of the human condition – home to the full gamut of human emotion. They can be seen as places of possibility, of energy, adventure and opportunity, but also as overwhelming and unnatural, constraining and suffocating.

It is therefore no surprise that cities are the setting for the work of many of the most celebrated photographers since the technology’s inception. Diane Arbus, Weegee, Joel Meyerowitz, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Karl Hugo Schmolz and countless others have used the urban environment as their canvas.

And today, with so many of us living in cities, it has never been easier to get outside and find inspiration on the streets. But of course with so many street and architectural photographers, how you can show a new perspective, tell a new story?

This list highlights a few of my favourite photographers who work, or worked in the urban environment. They each approach the city from a different viewpoint, and with a different motive, but are united in their ability to create wonderful, evocative art. I hope you find a wealth of inspiration, and a few surprises among these names.


(Banner image © Martin Roemers)

(Alfred Stieglitz and) Paul Strand (United States)