David Burnett

David Burnett

David Burnett launched his photographic career in 1967 as an intern at Time magazine while still earning a degree in political science at Colorado College. He went to Vietnam as a freelance photographer in 1970. Time magazine regularly published his pictures.

Following the death in Vietnam of photographer Larry Burrows in February, 1971, Burnett and David Hume Kennerly became the last photographers hired by LIFE. In the summer of 1972, Burnett was one of the few journalists present during the napalm bombing on the village of Trang Bang.

After two years in Vietnam and the demise of LIFE, he joined the French photo agency Gamma in 1973 before co-founding Contact Press Images with Robert Pledge in New York in 1976.

In a career that has spanned thirty years, David Burnett has visited more than seventy countries. In addition to assignments that have taken him throughout the USA, Asia, and both Western and Eastern Europe, Burnett found time to revisit Vietnam twice, producing a very personal picture essay in black and white in 1994, and a color picture story published in 2000 in Fortune magazine on the profound changes since the war.

David Burnett won several awards including "Magazine Photographer of the Year" from the Pictures of the Year Competition, the "World Press Photo of the Year", and the Robert Capa Award from the Overseas Press Club.