Walter Astrada was born in 1974 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He started his career as a staff photographer at the local La Nacion newspaper. After a formative trip through South America, he joined Associated Press (AP) in Bolivia and later in Argentina, Paraguay and then the Dominican Republic. Astrada worked as a freelancer for Agence France Presse (AFP) in the Dominican Republic from 2005 to 2006, and was represented and distributed by World Picture News. During 2008 and 2009 he covered Eastern Africa, out of Uganda.
He is currently based in Barcelona, Spain, where he continues to work as a freelancer and on two long-term projects, one about violence against women, and the other—the Under Pressure Project—about people with multiple sclerosis in Europe. Astrada also gives lectures and workshops, based on his long-term projects as a professional photographer and documentary video maker. He has won a wide range of awards over the years, including three World Press Photo prizes, the Bayeux-Calvados award for war correspondents; Photojournalist of the Year, and Best of Show, from NPPA-BOP; a PGB Photographer of the Year and Picture of the Year; a PDN Photo Annual first prize, a number of POYi awards, the Alfred I. du Pont Award for Excellence in Broadcast and Digital Journalism, and Alexia Foundation and Getty Editorial grants, among others.