8. Annie Leibovitz

Leibovitz is a force in contemporary portraiture. The former chief photographer for Rolling Stone—and creator of that 1980 nude photo of John Lennon and Yoko Ono—continues to make work today. Her 2008 portrait of a bare-backed Miley Cyrus was whipped into a scandal by the media. Cyrus responded with a public apology to her fans, while Leibovitz simply said, "I'm sorry that my portrait of Miley has been misinterpreted.... The photograph is a simple, classic portrait, with little make up, and I thinking it is very beautiful." No sensation, no spectacle, just telling it like it is.

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Above: Miley Cyrus, 2008