Photographer to Watch: Brent Stirton
Remember this cover? Well, it turns out the photographer who (off-the-record) shot Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's twins, resulting in one of People's highest-selling issues ever, and who also shot the first images of Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, captures more than celebrity babies. Brent Stirton is an accomplished photojournalist and a senior staff photographer for the assignment division of stock photography company Getty Images, New York. Just last week, Stirton won a highly coveted award, the 2008 Visa d'Or Award for Feature Photography, for his series on the slaughter of gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which pales in comparison to the wealth of other awards he has received. His photojournalism work is heartwrenchingly beautiful, sometimes haunting, horrifying, and perhaps NSFW. At the same time, the images are quite important to see, as he brings to light crucial topics like sustainability, the environment, HIV, and an array of devastating political issues. To hear more about Stirton, see some of his photos, and see a video where he talks about his work and his thoughts surrounding celebrity photography,
Stirton's work has been published by National Geographic Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, The Discovery Channel, Newsweek, The New York Times Magazine, The London Sunday Times Magazine, Le Express, Le Monde 2, GQ, Geo, Stern, CNN. Stirton travels an average of 10 months of the year on assignment, and actually also writes a blog for the Discovery Channel which regularly features pictures and stories from his travels.
Stirton's celebrity shoots are actually done anonymously and credited only to Getty Images, and Getty Images has only credited him on the record for the 2006 Jolie-Pitt baby shoot, not the 2008 shoot. In an interview with Photo District News, when asked whether he shot the 2008 photos, Stirton dodged the bullet with a "no comment." But he alluded that the answer was yes, and went on to say that he knows Angelina from his work in Sierra Leone, and that she gave him an award for his AIDS work.