Vincent Laforet, a three-time winner at the prestigious 2010 Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, is a director and Pulitzer Prize–winning photographer who is known for his forward-thinking approach to image-making and storytelling. In addition to having been commissioned by just about every important international publication—including Vanity Fair, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Sports Illustrated, Time, Newsweek and Life — Laforet is considered a pioneer both for his innovative tilt-shift and aerial photography and in the field of HD-capable DSLR cameras. In fact, his short film Reverie, the first 1080p video shot with a still camera, was seen by more than 2 million times on the first week of its release in 2009.
Laforet, who was born in 1975, began his photography career at the age of 15. He started as a photojournalist, honing his abilities by landing internships with newspapers such as The Los Angeles Times and with Reuters. By the time he was 25, he had established himself as the youngest staff photographer for The New York Times and, by the time he left, he had a Pulitzer for feature photography under his belt. “His images stir with life,” PDN wrote of him in a 2003 “One to Watch” profile. “Athletes are colorful heroes ripped from comic book pages while his wartime photographs successfully wander between the unimaginably large scale and the touchingly human.”
In 2005, American Photo named him one of the '100 Most Influential People in Photography,' and his work has been recognized in the Communication Arts and PDN annuals and by the World Press Photo Awards, the Pictures of the Year Competition, the Overseas Press Club, the National Headliners Awards and the Pro-Football Hall of Fame, among others. In June 2010, he was honored with a Gold, Silver, and a Bronze in the Titanium category at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival for his work as the director on the groundbreaking Canon 'Beyond the Still' competition, which he spearheaded with Grey Advertising.
“It’s not just the laundry list of awards that sets Laforet apart, though,” noted The FStop magazine in a 2010 interview with Laforet, whose fine-art prints have been exhibited worldwide and are part of numerous private collections. “It’s his steady and unique growth as a photographer. From shooting weddings [as a teen] to the NBA finals in college to his job at the Times and now his much publicized move to commercial photography and motion work, it’s been a long and fruitful evolution.”
Since 2006, Laforet himself has charted this evolution on his blog, which has become a must read in the photographic and filmmaking communities, attracting more than 3,000,000 visitors each year. His combination of candor and expertise have made him highly sought after as a consultant (for companies such as Apple, Canon, Manfrotto, Lexar, X-Rite, and Zeiss), a keynote speaker and an instructor. Laforet, who has been profiled on CNN, Good Morning America and in dozens of publications, has served as an adjunct professor at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism and at the International Center of Photography.
He is represented by the New York–based agency Stockland Martel and resides in Manhattan Beach, California, with his wife, Amber, son Noah and daughter Eliana.
Text by Kristina Feliciano