Introducing the 2019 Adobe Rising Stars of Photography

Photography is now more accessible than ever with the advent (and near-perfection) of the smartphone camera. A whole new world has opened up, giving a medium to a wealth of new perspectives and voices. What do all these fresh faces mean for modern photography? Well, for starters, it means choosing only 10 people for this year’s Adobe Rising Stars of Photography was all the more difficult. But it also means this year’s Rising Stars are more diverse and interesting than ever before!

After searching high and low, we’ve narrowed the list down to these incredible up-and-comers. They range from smartphone photographers to fully geared-up shutterbugs, from homemade foodies to globetrotting environmentalists, from North American to Middle Eastern to European and beyond. Without further ado, we want to introduce you to 10 of the brightest rising stars in the field of photography this year. Scroll through to preview their unique perspectives and follow along on the Lightroom Instagram for more of their work over the next few weeks.

Adriane de Souza – Qatar

Portrait and documentary photographer Adriane de Souza views the world as a series of images and stories waiting to be photographed. With a personal philosophy that creation is inherently good regardless of the perceived quality of the outcome, Adriane strives to create as much as she can, often surprising herself with what she captures along the way. These days, Adriane’s focus is on translating the unobserved stories of humans through photography and presenting them in a public, visual medium.

Filippo Masoni – Italy

Hailing from Italy, this landscape photographer traverses the globe, capturing the beauty he sees in nature. Filippo Masoni found himself engrossed in photography on a trip he took to visit the 5,000-year-old pines in California’s Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest. One moment he was snapping shots of these trees on his first-ever DSLR, and the next thing he knew, he couldn’t stop! Since then, Filippo has been traveling the world and has the pictures to prove it.

Alexandra Howland – Iraq

Four years ago, Alexandra Howland was a fine art painter who felt out-of-touch with the subjects of her work. In search of a more active involvement in the world around her, Alexandra discovered a passion for photography. With a camera in hand, she could paint a more honest picture of the events she witnessed. She threw herself into her new life’s work, moving to Iraq to examine the areas portrayed through a limited lens of foreign coverage and misunderstood by the outsider. Through her photography, Alexandra aims to add something to the world that differs from the pre-existing narrative or perception of her subjects.

Ariel Fields – Israel

A nature and landscape photographer with a focus on conservation, Ariel Fields uses his camera to spread awareness of the importance of preserving the earth and its creatures. Inspiration struck Ariel when he learned about the striped hyena, a beautiful species native to the Middle East whose population is declining. After discovering his love for photographing these creatures, Ariel began using his work to educate people about other threatened species near home and around the world.

Guen Fiore – United Kingdom

Guen Fiore’s foray into photography happened by chance. Inspired by some fashion photography she came across on social media, Guen tried her hand at a photoshoot and fell in love. Although she is self-described as quite shy, Guen’s favorite things to capture are people. When she is behind the camera, Guen’s extroverted side emerges as she builds strong relationships, bringing out an element of honesty in what she views as a collaboration between herself and her subjects.

Aaron Kajumba – Uganda

Living away from home a few years ago, Aaron Kajumba stumbled upon photography as a means to share his adventures in California with his family and friends back in Uganda. With a lifelong interest in meeting new people and hearing their stories, Aaron had found a medium through which to showcase these stories with others. Since then, this street photographer has been capturing what he finds interesting at home and in his travels.

Yaphet Teklu – United States

Originally from Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, Yaphet Woubishet found his love of photography while exploring his own hometown. School and part-time jobs took him to all corners of the city and gave him the chance to see it in a new light. As Yaphet roamed around the place in which he grew up, he naturally began documenting his days, photographing the city and the colorful, chaotic, nostalgic mix of interesting characters it has to offer.

Kelly Stefanski – United States

Before devoting her life to photography, Kelly Stefanski dedicated her studies to science with a particular interest in human health and the environment. Driven by an increasing concern for our planet’s limited resources, Kelly found herself drawn more and more to documenting her learnings on camera. Now, she is a landscape and wildlife photographer with a strong focus on exploring the human relationship with nature.

Byron Brown – United States

A fashion photographer through and through, Byron never hesitates to share his love of portraits, more specifically, fashion portraits. In his one-on-one sessions, he begins by playing music and getting to know his muse for the day. According to Byron, it turns out that even though people can take millions of selfies, they often still get anxiety when in front of a camera (which is honestly probably the same price as their iPhones). When Byron’s subjects get more comfortable and begin to open up, that’s when Byron can capture all the emotion, movement and creativity that come along with fashion photography.

Kamile Kave – Netherlands

A love of food and talent with a camera were all it took for Kamile Kave to make the switch from working at a multinational company to starting her own career as a food photographer. Her favorite subjects to capture, besides the obvious fluffy pancakes or steaming latte, is food in action. Kamile uses the drizzling of honey or pouring of coffee to illustrate more of a story in her photos. It also helps to invoke the senses of taste and smell in the audience.