John Swannell

John Swannell, photographer to the stars, has been at the forefront of British photography for four decades. John Swannell photos are held in collections at the V&A, MOMA in New York and the National Portrait Gallery which owns over 120. Clarendon holds some of the most iconic John Swannell prints, from striking images of fashion and beauty to world renowned portraits of the Royal Family. Browse our full collection of John Swannell art below.

John Swannell Artist Information

John Swannell Artist Biography Image
John Swannell Artist Biography Image


John Swannell’s photography resonates with character and originality. Over the last four decades his ability create head turning images has led to numerous commissions and his work is prized all over the world. Born in 1946, John worked first as an assistant at Vogue Studios and then assisted David Bailey for four years before setting up his own studio. He worked for magazines including Vogue, Harpers & Queen, the Sunday Times and Tatler. During this time he developed his distinctive, individual style.

After a range of invitations to exhibit in such prestigious locations as the Royal Academy and the National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh he was awarded a fellowship of the Royal PhotographicSociety - one of the youngest members to have achieved this status at the time. In November 1994, Diana, Princess of Wales, personally commissioned John to photograph her together with her two sons. This was followed by a one man show of his portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in London to celebrate the publication of his book ‘Twenty Years On’ which is now held in their archives.

John has photographed numerous member of the British royal family and a huge array of celebrities from all walks of life. The National Portrait Gallery in London has over fifty of his photographs, and The V&A, The National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh, The Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Royal Photographic Society now have many of John’s works in their permanent collections. Amongst other commissions he took the photographs for the cover of Tony and Cherie Blair’s book, and done the promotional shoots for many top West End theatrical productions.