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The work of photojournalists provides a living archive of global diversity. The work is often driven by a sense of adventure and is frequently free of judgement. In these regards the images do support the old saying that "a picture is worth a thousand words."


Magnum Photo Agency

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Access to the Magnum archives requires a "membership". This is free and immediate by filling out the registration form.

Magnum Photos is a photographic co-operative of great diversity and distinction owned by its photographer-members. With powerful individual vision, Magnum photographers chronicle the world and interpret its peoples, events, issues and personalities. Through its four editorial offices in New York, London, Paris and Tokyo, and a network of fifteen sub-agents, Magnum Photos provides photographs to the press, publishers, advertising, television, galleries and museums across the world.

The Magnum Photos library is a living archive updated daily with new work from across the globe. The library houses all the work produced by Magnum photographers and some special collections by non-members. There are approximately one million photographs in both print and transparency in the physical library with 250,000 images available online.

Photograph of Henri Cartier-Bresson taking a photograph.
Cartier-Bresson was one of the four original founders of Magnum in 1947.

Magnum has an archive of 250,000 photpgraphs from around the world   

Yann Arthus-Bertrand

   Web Site - Yann Arthus-Bertrand web site

Born on March 13th, 1946, Yann ARTHUS-BERTRAND has always had a passion for nature. From age 17 to 20, he does a brief stint in the cinema, first as assistant director, then as an actor, playing with Michelle Morgan in ìDis-moi qui tu esî among others. In 1967, Yab settles in the centre of France where he is in charge of a nature reserve. At 30, he moves to Kenya with his wife, Anne, in order to study the behaviour of lions in the Massai Mara reserve. Feeling the need to tell the facts through images rather than writing, he then truly becomes a photographer... The experience is at the origin of his first book, Lions (1981), and gives him the opportunity to discover the beauty of the world from the air aboard a hot air balloon. Upon his return to France, he becomes a photojournalist specialising in adventure, sports and nature. He has covered ten editions of the Paris-Dakar rally, produces each year the Roland Garros yearbook and takes photographs of nature lovers, such as Dian Fossey and her mountain gorillas in Rwanda. In 1989, he decides to gather 100 of the best French photographers and organise "3 days in France" ñ an event and a book. As his passion for aerial photography develops, his work is recognised internationally and his pictures are published in famed magazine such as Paris-Match, Geo, Life, National Geographic... In 1991, he creates ALTITUDE, a visual data bank of aerial views gathering the work of photographers from all parts of the world. In 1995, under the patronage of the Ecological Science department of UNESCO, he embarks upon the ambitious project of creating a scientific data bank of the Earth seen from above. This continuing survey of the planetís ecosystems seen from a new angle still constitutes an important part of his work; it is reflected in exhibitions and publications allowing the public at large to better comprehend sustainable development and what is at stake there. In parallel, Yab carries on with the systematic inventory of house pets and domestic breeds, photographing the animals in the studio or outdoors against a canvas backdrop. Finally, in 2003, he launches the project ì6 Billions Othersî and sends three cameramen throughout the world to meet the people who live within places photographed from the air. To discover all of Yann ARTHUS-BERTRANDís books, go to the Publications section on the Practical Info page.


Started in 1994, the ìEarth from aboveî project was born from Yabís dream for a general survey on the state of the Earth at the eve of the 21st century... an in depth project involving quite considerable means as well as a truly rigorous approach, that could only materialise through the passion and determination of the whole team. ìYear 2000 was almost upon us, and I wanted to tackle an ambitious long-term project. Since the lions, nature has been one of my chief concerns, though I was then less committed to sustainable development and more interested in the preservation of exceptional sites. However, working on location soon made me realise that Man cannot be dissociated from the landscape. Gradually, I became convinced that supporting the theories on sustainability was the way towards a reasoned form of development.î Nobody believed in the ìEarth from aboveî project: two hundred letters sent to potential partners remained for the most part without answer. After much battling to bring others to share their views on such a worthwhile enterprise, the team managed to assemble the necessary logistic and financial support.Under the patronage of UNESCO, the team was invited to fly over certain countries. The CLUB MED ordered a book on its holiday villages seen from the air: it was a start. More help came from the making of such books as Kuwait from above, Morocco from the air... And from contracts with magazines for aerial subject...Another important support came from FUJIFILM in the form of free film and processing. And Yab borrowed money and invested his own. Early in 1999, Yab suddenly has doubts (ìHaving doubts is second nature to meî): he does not feel ready to publish yet, wants to spend one more year flying and collecting views. HervÈ de LA MARTINI»RE will insist that he must come through on schedule. Yabís ambition is that the book be popular, financially accessible to all: the publisher leaves him free to make the book he wants and name the public price. As a result of this project, the team has been to over 150 countries to date, photographs of thousands of sites have been taken, and it still monopolises a great deal of time and energy from all involved. To find out about partnerships, see the links in the Practical Info section.