Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

National Geographic Magazine: 50 Years of Covers

See some of the most compelling National Geographic covers from the last 50 years and learn about the significant milestones reported in the magazine’s pages—all of which are available in The Complete National Geographic, a collection of every issue of National Geographic magazine in a six-DVD-ROM set.see the gallery link here.…MORE

Photograph by Steve McCurry

June 1985—Afghan Girl
When photographer Steve McCurry took a young girl’s picture one morning in Pakistan, he created an image that would captivate millions around the world. The haunting green eyes that stared out from the June 1985 cover of National Geographic belonged to an unknown refugee who for 17 years was identified simply as the “Afghan girl.” She has since been located and was once again featured on the magazine’s cover in April 2002.

Photograph by Albert Moldvay

January 1967
Dressed for Eid al-Fitr festivities, two young girls play on a swing in Pakistan, then made up of two lands located on opposite sides of the Indian subcontinent. The cover’s traditional interior border of oak leaves and acorns, first introduced in 1910, begins to recede around the increasingly bold feature photographs.

Photograph by Michael Nichols

July 2006—Panda, Inc.
A year after his celebrated birth at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, D.C., panda cub Tai Shan appears on the cover of National Geographic with mother Mei Xiang. Unapologetic cuteness abounds on the pages within—something feature author Lynne Warren writes may, along with their persistent scarcity, largely contribute to the popularity of China’s beloved bear.

Photograph by David Doubilet

April 2000
A shot inside the notorious mouth of a great white shark is a fitting introduction to Jaws author Peter Benchley’s feature article on the threats facing the surprisingly fragile predator. Twenty-five years after the box-office hit based on his novel terrified moviegoers, Benchley and photographer David Doubilet set out to portray the ocean’s great hunters in a different light.

See them all here

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