Since 2017, 41% of our award winners have been female-identifying. We want to do better.
So what exactly is the current state of gender equality in the photography industry? The data speaks for itself. Here are some of our most revealing discoveries.
On an international scale, 70% to 80% of photography students are women, but only 13% to 15% of them go on to achieve the status of a professional photographer.
Average photographers’ salary in the US
$50,594 – Male
$28,042 – Female
In the art world, little has changed
In 1985, less than 5% of artists in the Met were female and 80% of nudes were female. In 2012, less than 4% of artists in the Met are female and 76% of nudes are female.
In a study of 820,000 exhibitions across the public and commercial sectors in 2018, only one third were by women artists.
In 2017, 153 magazine covers from the 10 leading US fashion publications were shot mostly by men, with only 13.7% of them shot by female photographers.
Male photographers made up between 89% and 96% of those working commercially between 2013 and 2017.
In the US, as revealed in a TEDx talk by the celebrated photographer Jill Greenberg, 92% of adverts are shot by men, as are 85% of magazine covers. In her review of advertising agency output from 2013 to 2017, it showed that women had photographed less than 10% all of ad imagery.
Research by advertising industry equality initiative Equal Lens has found that less than 25% of the commercial photographers represented by 70 of the industry’s leading agents are female.
Just 18% of the AOP’s accredited photographers and assistant photographers are women – compared with 75% of its student members.
Out of a sample of 5,202 photographers from more than 100 countries over four years, research shows that more than half of participating photographers are Caucasian/White, over 80% are men and about two thirds are between the age of 30 and 49.
68% of women photographers participating in this study face discrimination in the workplace. When further asked about obstacles to success, they cited sexism (54%), industry stereotypes or practices (53%), and lack of opportunities for women (49%).
Data from Women Photograph reveals that between April and June 2019, eight of the world’s leading newspapers printed drastically fewer lead photographs by women than by men. Figures ranged from just 4.2% (three out of 72 photos published) in Le Monde to 47% (44/92) in the San Francisco Chronicle.
How are things changing, and how can each of us play our part in seeing a more gender-equal photography industry? Download our e-guide to get the facts, meet the industry leaders reshaping the future, and learn how you can play a part.
Kering, Women in Motion Press Pack, 2019 [available here]
Written by Jenny Smets for witness.com, Overshadowed or Overlooked?, 2017 [avaliable here]
Data USA, Photographer Analysis, 2018 [avaliable here]
Written by Cath Sleeman for theconversation.com, Big data analysis reveals staggering extent of gender inequality in creative industries, 2019 [available here]
Written by Jo Slack for LOOK/15, Where are all the female photographers? A look back at the ‘Women in Photography’ panel discussion at The Photography Show, 2015 [avaliable here]
Written by Anny Shaw for The Art Newspaper, Gallery representation dwindles for ‘established’ female artists, new research finds, 2019 [avallibale here]
Written by Whitney Bauck for fashionista.com, Fashion Photography has a real gender equality problem, 2018 [avalibale here]
Jill Greenberg, TEDxWabashCollege, The Female Lens, 2018 [ available here]
Written by Dana Thomas for The New York Times, Women in the Spotlight, but Few Behind the Lens, 2019 [avalibale here]
Equallens.com [avalible here]
Written by Rachael Stevens for Creativereview.com, Can Equal Lens tackle photography’s gender imbalance?, 2019 [avalible here]
Written by Adrian Hadland and Camilla Barnett for World Press Photo, The State of News Photography 2018, 2018 [avaliable here]
Written by Adrian Hadland, Paul Lambert and Camilla Barnett for World Press Photo, The State of News Photography 2016, 2016 [avaliable here]
Written by Celia Rose Jackson for University of South Wales, Women were photography pioneers yet gender inequality persists in the industry today, 2019 [avaliable here]