Instagram has been heavily debated by professional photographers. There are those who resent that the app has turned even the most amateur photographer into a success - it allows anyone, regardless of experience, to capture visually stunning photographs on-the-go. And then there are those who complain about the photographers who upload their carefully edited DSLR photos to the app, effectively going against what the app stands for: posting photos in an instant. Lastly, there are the professional photographers who have embraced Instagram as a useful tool that turns their phone into a camera (no equipment to lug around) and lets them instantly share their art with others.
Here are just a few of our favorites of the latter – pro photographers who also experiment and share:
1. Nick Knight @showstudio_nick_knight
Nick Knight is a British fashion photographer and director of SHOWstudio.com, an innovative broadcasting company that delivers fashion, live, as it happens. In July, he used Instagram to shoot the first ever high fashion Instagram spread. He also recently captured Kim Kardashian looking, as many online have said, "normal."
2. Nigel Barker @nigelbarker
Nigel Barker rose to pop culture fame as a job on "America’s Next Top Model," however his interest goes beyond fashion, as proven by his dedication to charity work and his most recent photography exhibit, Haiti: Hunger and Hope. His Instagram is a mix of personal and work photographs, with a touch of whimsy. (And there are lots of pics of him, which is nice, since the former model is quite easy on the eyes.)
3. Brad Mangin @bmangin
A freelance sports photographer, Brad Mangin just had a six page spread in Sports Illustrated that consisted solely of baseball photos he took using Instagram. That alone should give the professional photographers who insist on criticizing the app pause.
4. Michael O’Neal @moneal
A former Creative Director at Apple, Michael O’Neal left in July 2011 to start his own photography business. His Instagram is full of gorgeous landscapes (thanks to the fact that he calls San Francisco home), riveting portraits, and photos that will simply put a smile on your face.
5. Cole Rise @colerise
Cole Rise is a landscape photographer who spends a lot of time on the road. His Instagram account gives followers a chance to see the results of his shoots sometimes weeks before he’s able to develop the film. He’s also the creator of the Rise filter.
6. Carli Kiene / Inked Fingers @inkedfingers
Carli Kiene is one half of Inked Fingers, a husband and wife photography and design team with a focus on lifestyle and weddings. Their Instagram perfectly captures romance, nostalgia, and the idea that there’s happiness to be found in the little things.
7. Dan Rubin @danrubin
Dan Rubin is a photographer and designer who’s “improving the world through design.” Instagram is clearly part of Rubin’s daily routine with photos all over the world that will inspire you to immediately buy a plane ticket and just go.
8. Paul Octavious @pauloctavious
Paul Octavious has worked with brands like Nike and McDonalds, but it’s his imagination and warmth that comes through in his Instagram photos.
9. Rich Nacin @richnyc
Rich Nacin is a photographer who specializes in black and white photographs, effectively capturing details and nuances that might otherwise be missed. His photos are both haunting and riveting, giving viewers the opportunity to notice a moment or detail that might otherwise have been totally missed.
10. Ike Edani @ikedeani
Ike Edani treats his phone like a camera and, as a result, consistently captures small moments that evoke an emotion in the viewer. The former architect has an amazing eye for graphic shapes and lines, but his portraits are equally as stunning.
Got one we missed? Leave it in the comments.