20 documentary photographers to follow on Instagram in 2020

Reinvigorate your boring Insta, starting with this collection of gritty, witty and big-hearted recorders of real life.

by Ryan White
05 February 2020, 3:00pm

If there’s one thing, and one thing only, that productivity vortex Instagram is good for, it’s finding incredible imagery. So, in 2020, it’s time to unfollow @fuckjerry -- all the good memes are on Twitter anyway -- and instead enjoy its original purpose; unearthing brilliant photographers that offer your feed something truly original.

Sam Gregg
There’s a simple theatricality to Sam Gregg’s photography that feels reminiscent of some of the great street photographers of the 20th century.

Sophie Green
From the banger racing scene to Aladura Spiritualist African churches, Sophie captures the beautiful multitudes of Britain.

Olivia Arthur
Magnum photographer Olivia's series In Private/Mumbai captured tiny, beautiful moments of solitude amid the maelstrom of Mumbai.

Harry Mitchell
Abattoirs, riots, fashion weeks, football matches, farms: Harry shoots it all.

Brunel Johnson
North-west Londoner Brunel captures simple, heartwarming moments wherever he travels.

Hajar Benjida
Dutch-Moroccan photographer Hajar Benjida only graduated from her BA in photography recently, but her images of the Atlanta strip club Magic City have been making waves across the world.

Juan Brenner
Juan is a photographer and art director based in Guatemala City. Most recently, he traced the journey of the Spanish conquistadors 500 years ago through his native country.

Yagazie Emezi
Nigerian photographer Yagazie began shooting the fashion scene in Lagos in 2015 and got into photojournalism a year later. Her work is powerful, emotional and at times uncomfortable to look at.

Daniel Jack Lyons
From his portraits of Mozambique’s vilified LGBT+ community, to his images of displaced Ukranian youth throughout the Russian military occupation, Daniel uses his camera to find moments of equanimity in often fraught situations.

Milena Villalon
Sitting somewhere between the photographic traditions of reality and fantasy, Milena elevates the everyday to something much more curious.

Joshua Osborne
Working across fashion and portraiture, photographer and director Joshua Osborne explores themes like modern masculinity in his documentary work.

Nanna Heitmann
German-Russian Nanna has won numerous prestigious awards over the past five years for her multidimensional portraits of rural communities in Russia.

Cian Oba-Smith
China’s copycat cities, Kentucky’s African-American horsemen, Tory Island… Cian observes many different dimensions of culture and photographs each with sensitivity, care and verve.

Ian Weldon
Ian Weldon is not a wedding photographer. Or at least, he is, but he’s not like the rest of them. “Here is a photographer who shoots weddings as they really are: comical family occasions,” says Martin Parr. He also offers a look into Britain's other absurd traditions and events.

Stacy Kranitz
Stacy’s feed offers fascinating vignettes of American life.

Lucia Buricelli
Originally from Venice but based in New York, Lucia’s graphic depictions of the street are wonderful and eccentric.

Cécile Smetana Baudier
The French-Danish photographer won acclaim for her work documenting the complicated tensions that arise for Mexico’s Afro-Mexican community.

Cyprien Clément-Delmas
A film director and photographer, Cyprien’s recent work looks at a disadvantaged white Afrikaner community in South Africa.

J Bilhan
Exploring the many different stories of the human condition and the way distinct facets of his identity intersect, J Bilhan’s work is incredibly moving.

Anya Broido
The lurid, neon-inflected portraits Anya takes on the streets of London and New York have a timeless quality.

street photography
documentary photography