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Steve McCurry (born Feb. 24, 1950) is an American photographer who has worked in photojournalism and editorial. He is best known for his 1984 photograph "Afghan Girl", which originally appeared in National Geographic magazine. McCurry is a member of Magnum Photos.
McCurry is the recipient of numerous awards, including Magazine Photographer of the Year, awarded by the National Press Photographers Association; the Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Medal; and two first-place prizes in the World Press Photo contest (1985 and 1992).
McCurry attended Penn State University. He originally planned to study cinematography and filmmaking, but instead gained a degree in theater arts and graduated in 1974. He became interested in photography when he started taking pictures for the Penn State newspaper The Daily Collegian.
After working at Today's Post in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania for 2 years, he left for India to freelance.
McCurry's career was launched when, disguised in Afghani garb, he crossed the Pakistan border into rebel-controlled areas of Afghanistan just before the Soviet invasion. He left with rolls of film sewn into his clothes. These images were subsequently published by The New York Times, TIME and Paris Match and won him the Robert Capa Gold Medal for Best Photographic Reporting from Abroad.
McCurry continued to cover armed conflicts, including the Iran-Iraq War, Lebanon Civil War, the Cambodian Civil War, the Islamic insurgency in the Philippines, the Gulf War and the Afghan Civil War. His work has been featured in magazines and he is a frequent contributor to National Geographic. He has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1986.
McCurry focused on the human consequences of war, intending to not only show what war impresses on the landscape, but rather, on the human face. “Most of my images are grounded in people. I look for the unguarded moment, the essential soul peeking out, experience etched... (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_McCurry)