National Photography Day—celebrated each year on August 19—is a day to recognize the creative minds that capture snapshots of life’s fleeting moments. Since The Magic City is full of extremely talented creators, we rounded up 15 local photographers that deserve your follow on Instagram!
Disclaimer: This is by no means an exhaustive list of talented photographers in Birmingham! Tag us on Instagram @bhamnow to share your favorite local photographer 📸
1. David Youngblood | @dyoungblood71
David Youngblood produces some of the most awe-inspiring landscape photographs of Birmingham I’ve ever seen. Armed with a DJI Mavic drone, David is always finding new ways to showcase the magic of The Magic City.
“As far as my favorite things to shoot in Birmingham, I always seem to gravitate towards the ‘icons’… Vulcan, City Federal, Regions Field, etc, the things everyone recognizes. And, if I can get a good sunrise or sunset along with those, that’s even better.”David Youngblood
2. Ginnard Archibald | @ginnard
Whether it’s a professional cinema camera or an iPhone, a film camera or digital, Ginnard Archibald is constantly looking for new techniques to make his visuals unique.
“I love capturing the people and the architecture here. It might seem a bit cliché to say that there’s magic here, but screw it… it’s the truth. I am constantly inspired and energized by this big little city. I’m proud to call this place my home.”Ginnard Archibald
3. Mary Fehr | @marycfehr
Both a photographer and a model, Mary Fehr can do it all—weddings, portrait shoots, commercial photography for local businesses and more. In fact, Bham Now has called on Mary for photo work in the past! You can learn more about Mary’s work on her website, Oh Honey Photo Co.
4. Larry O’Gay | @larrylog
After admiring Larry O’Gay’s work for years, I finally met him in person while we both stopped to take photos of a flock of pigeons near The Battery in Southside—and if you spend enough time in Downtown Birmingham, you’re bound to meet him one day! Larry specializes in street photography in The Magic City, finding creative ways to balance light and shadows while capturing fleeting, genuine moments.
5. Leland Kent | @abandoned_southeast
Leland Kent is known far and wide for his incredible images of abandoned and forgotten places across the Southeast. Leland documents his travels and explorations on his blog—Abandoned Southeast—and has written five books about his experiences.
“My favorite things to photograph would be the historic homes and buildings that are scattered throughout the city. What inspires me is the progress and change the city has been going through the last several years. With so much being restored, renovated or demolished, I think it’s important we capture these historic structures in photograph before they are gone.”Leland Kent, Abandoned Southeast
6. Wil Cushman | @wilcushmanphoto
When he’s not creating compelling visuals for the Birmingham Business Alliance, you can find Wil Cushman snapping incredible images of The Magic City, exciting events and sincere portraits of people and pets.
“I love shooting architecture, it’s where I really learned my way around a camera. In a town where we have so many recognizable landmarks, I’m always looking for a unique perspective on our beautiful city.”Wil Cushman
7. Josh Box | @undergroundbirmingham
Josh Box, the eye behind Underground Birmingham, sees the city from a perspective most of us would never dream of going—underground. Together with fellow explorer Jeff Newman, Josh documents the duo’s discovery of forgotten mine shafts, hidden caves and long-abandoned buildings in Birmingham and throughout the country.
“My favorite thing to photograph is the industrial history of Birmingham from underground. The risk, rush and adventure inspire me!”Josh Box
8. Rachel Callahan | @objectivityrach
Every Fourth of July, my mind is blown by the jaw-dropping images that Rachel Callahan takes of Vulcan during Thunder on the Mountain—but that’s not her only speciality. Rachel’s Instagram feed is packed with beautiful photos of nature, sunsets, landscapes and wildlife.
“I love to photograph all of Birmingham’s beautiful angles, and if paired with sunsets, even better. 100% of the profits of my work is donated to The WellHouse, a local nonprofit that rescues and cares for victims of human trafficking. I am inspired by the incredible work they do to help women and children recover and regain their life. To date, Picture Birmingham has been able to donate over $50,000 to The WellHouse. My website is picturebirmingham.com.”Rachel Callahan
9. Joshua Woods | @joe.woah
Just about every Saturday morning, you can find Joshua Woods taking photos of cars and fellow car enthusiasts at Birmingham Cars & Coffee or Magic City Octane. Though cars are his specialty, Joshua is just as talented when it comes to landscapes and portrait sessions.
“I’m truly addicted to photography; I can’t imagine my life without a camera. My first camera, “Kiki the Kodak”, was a hand-me-down point and shoot from my friend and I was hooked on photography. Originally I photographed flowers, animals, bugs… anything I thought was cool. Fast forward almost 20 years and I’m still as invested as I was at 18, and one of the main reasons is the local tuner/import car community. I have been in love with cars for as long as I can remember and I’ve had the opportunity to photograph some of the fastest, most expensive, and rarest cars in the world.
Birmingham has been a true blessing to my photography because the people here care about their city. I like waking up early some days to just walk the streets downtown trying to capture light in a new way.”Joshua Woods
10. Kenslie McGuire | @definitelykenslie
Birmingham-based graphic designer and photographer Kenslie McGuire is a master of visual content creation—and her Instagram page is no exception! Whether its creative portrait sessions, inspiring commercial photography or Polaroids to capture the moment, aspiring creators can always find inspiration from Kenslie’s work.
“The new CityWalk Skatepark has become one of my favorite spots to photograph in Birmingham. I love working with direct hard light, so when the skate park lights up with the golden hour glow, it truly feels like a scene from a movie. It’s so inspiring to such a positive and encouraging community of people working to refine such an impressive skill. Truly love it! I find walking around a new city, camera in hand, to be one of the most inspiring things. Being surrounded by new sights helps retrain my eye to notice beautiful details.”Kenslie McGuire
11. Griffin Levy | @griffin.levy
I first spotted Griffin Levy in action while he documented the Birmingham Squadron’s inaugural match in Legacy Arena, and I’ve been a big fan of his work ever since. If you’re at a sporting event in The Magic City, odds are you’ll see Griffin there—ready to capture the moment.
“I work in sports, but I really don’t like capturing action, believe it or not. I like capturing the things a lot of people don’t see—the raw emotion of players, whether it be before, during or after a game. Finding those creative ways to make what is usually a ‘boring’ shot, not. And I think that translates into why I like city photography and film photography so much–you have to really think and be creative, not just press a button.”Griffin Levy
12. Gracie Eddins | @greddins.visuals
Gracie Eddins is a talented local photographer specializing in capturing some of life’s biggest moments—engagements and weddings. A master of portraiture, Gracie is consistently finding new ways to showcase her client’s special bond.
“I have a passion for a documentarian approach to photography, for capturing the biggest and smallest moments in a journalistic, creative and nostalgic way. I fell in love with photography when I was 16 and have never stopped. The way an image transports you back to a specific place and time will never not captivate me. The majority of my photos tend to be candid raw moments instead of posed manufactured ones. I believe, especially when it comes to weddings, which is what I primarily photograph, that the pictures should be about your wedding, not your wedding be about the pictures. There is beauty in raw authenticity and emotion and that is what keeps me picking up my camera time and time again.
I am inspired by emotion, human connection, art and movies! By raw moments that cannot be repeated.Gracie Eddins
If I am in an editing rut you can catch me doing an ‘inspo lap’ around the Birmingham Museum of Art!”
13. Alan Huffman | @bigalphotos
Armed with his trusty Nikon, Alan Huffman travels the southeast in search of intimate vignettes, sprawling landscapes and everything in-between. Check out his feed for some awe-inspiring photos of our amazing city & state!
14. Beau Gustafson | @bigswedepeople
You’ve most likely seen Beau Gustafson’s work in Birmingham—whether you know it or not! Famous for his portrait work, Beau’s photos of Alabama’s most iconic faces have appeared in B-Metro Magazine, Birmingham Magazine, Southern Living and more. In addition to portraiture, Beau specializes in food photography for restaurants far and wide.
15. Jenna Bennett | @jennabennettphotography
In between her day job and taking care of her beloved pup Livvy, Jenna Bennett can almost always be found behind her camera! Whether its graduation pics, family portrait sessions, an engagement shoot or anything in-between, Jenna loves capturing special memories for her clients.
“My inspiration comes from my true love for celebration. Growing up, my parents made sure I knew that whatever milestone I was achieving, it was important and worth celebrating. I have carried that with me and now get to share in the celebration of others through photography. Life is full of excitement and special moments that are worth preserving so we can cherish them in the future!”Jenna Bennett
Did we miss your favorite local photographer? We are always looking to learn more about the talented creatives in The Magic City. Tag us @bhamnow on Instagram to share your favorite photos by Birmingham photographers!