Based in Los Angeles, Ryan Hunter is an award-winning photographer best known for his captivating documentary and dynamically lit portrait photographs of musicians and celebrities. His award-winning work is regularly featured in Guitar Center’s ad campaigns, critically-acclaimed TV program At Guitar Center with Nic Harcourt and Guitar Center Sessions, as well as numerous publications worldwide. His deft grasp of the craft has allowed him to capture legendary artists at their most intimate moments – showcasing musicians including Eric Clapton, Metallica, Linkin Park, Deadmau5 and Slash, to name a few.
Hunter’s passion for photography began over 20 years ago, when his stepdad gave him his first camera. Initially, Hunter started shooting his friend’s garage bands and eventually began shooting flyers, album covers and concerts of up-and-coming Punk bands in Hollywood. It didn’t take long for Hunter to make a name for himself as a photographer in the Punk music scene and before long he was offered an opportunity to shoot bands at the Warped Tour, leading to a two year stint capturing live shows for Revolt In Style magazine.
In December 2002, Hunter graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Brooks Art Institute, where he studied the technical science behind photography. While at Brooks, Hunter’s work accrued several awards and accolades for his outstanding photography achievements including the Brooks Institute of Photography Award (2001) and inclusion in the Photographer’s Forum and Nikon’s “Best of College Photography Annual” (2000 and 2002). Concurrently, Hunter worked as an assistant to photographer Larry Janss from 1998 to 2004. Under Janss’ direction, he studied the practice of Ansel Adam’s zone system for shooting black- and-white, fine-tuning Hunter’s eye to see light in unconventional ways. Together, Hunter and Janss co-founded the Broken Oak art gallery in 2004. For the next two years Hunter remained focused on growing and managing the gallery, single-handedly building, designing, and coordinating shows for esteemed artists, such as Joyce Tenneson and Don Kirby among others.
Longing to return to photography, Hunter left the gallery behind in 2006 and took a position as Photography Producer at Guitar Center’s corporate headquarters. Under Hunter’s direction, the music retailer was able to bring all of its catalog photography in-house, and build a self- sufficient photo department. Hunter and his team have pushed boundaries in order to perfect the raw, gritty style of photos that have gone on to appear in prestigious publications such as Rolling Stone, Billboard, USA Today and People Magazine. The Los Angeles Times described Hunter’s images as zooming “in on the torqued faces of musicians in the heat of action.” Recently, Hunter’s photography has received many accolades for capturing the true essence of the artists in their element, including:
Black and White Magazine
o Single Image Spot Light Award 2015
o Single Image Award 2015
IPA (International Photography Awards)
o Third Place “Advertising/ Music” Taylor Hawkins” 2014
o Honorable Mention “Event” “Punx” 2014
o Honorable Mention “Event” “Tommy Lee” 2014
o Honorable Mention “Advertising/Music” “Devil Driver” 2014
o Honorable Mention “Advertising/Music” “Taylor Hawkins” 2014