celebrity being photographed by paparazzi

Who is the Most Photographed Person in the World in 2023?

Whether it’s a socialite, religious figure, actor or a member of the royal family, we all want to know about the most photographed people. Can you guess #1?

By Jeff Collier

Whether it’s a socialite, religious figure, actor or a member of the royal family, we all want to know about the most photographed people.

Seeing these celebrities grace the cover of every conceivable magazine or newspaper piques our interest and gives us a way to ‘connect’ with them.

In this article, we’ll talk about the most photographed people in the world in 2023 and several other famous people who held that title over the years.

(You’ll also enjoy our article on the most photographed places in the world.)

So, let’s take a closer look at who the paparazzi’s lenses favour the most!

Who is the Most Photographed Person in the World Today?

Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian red dress

Credit: Eva Rinaldi

Though known most recently for being romantically tied to comedic actor Pete Davidson, Kim Kardashian has been covered by mass media outlets in paparazzi photographs for a long time.

In addition to being the daughter of Robert Kardashian, a former attorney for O.J. Simpson, Kim Kardashian has managed to make a name for herself thanks to her trademark hourglass fatigue, reality TV show and sex tape controversy that have kept her relevant in the eye of the public for years.

Today, Kim Kardashian is easily one of the most photographed people on earth today due to her scandalous divorce from the consistently controversial Kayne West.

Britney Spears

Britney Spears black shoulderless dress

Eva Rinaldi

One of the greatest American pop stars of all time, Britney Spears has managed to become one of the most photographed people on the planet thanks to family and legal drama with her father.

Beginning her career on The Mickey Mouse Club and later becoming a pop star sensation, Britney was a gifted singer and dancer with a killer combination of beauty and charisma the public yearned to know more about.

Unfortunately, what started as photographing Britney for positive publicity soon turned negative following a split from her second husband, Kevin Federline.

The tabloids no longer focused on her red-carpet evening gowns — instead shifting focus to her unravelling personal life.

Britney allegedly turned to various substances to cope, which appeared to lead to poor decision-making, multiple trips to rehab and one of the most infamous events of the era: conservatorship under her father.

Thankfully, the conservatorship was terminated, and Britney regained control of her life.

For that reason, as well as her past life as a pop star, Britney Spears continues to be one of the most photographed people of all time.

Joe Biden

Joe Biden in suit in front of flag

Adam Schultz

Though he entered office as President of the United States in 2021, President Biden’s political interests started in the late 1960s.

Beginning by practicing law before becoming a senator, Joe Biden made a name for himself in the political sphere and was selected by Barack Obama to become the 47th Vice President of the United States.

In between political accomplishments and accolades, Biden experienced a traumatic tragedy when his first wife and infant daughter were killed in a car accident.

This, coupled with his role as senator, which had only started months earlier, led to the start of Biden being regularly photographed.

Today, as leader of the country, Biden has worked hard to relieve some of the economic and financial impacts of COVID-19, which includes the American Rescue Plan.

As one of the most powerful men in the country, Joe Biden continues to be one of the most photographed people on earth.

Barack Obama

Barack Obama in front of senate

United States Senate

As America’s first African American to hold office, Barack Obama earned his place as one of the most photographed people on the planet.

After graduating from the prestigious Harvard Law School, Obama practiced law with a focus on civil rights before becoming the country’s 44th President.

During his time as the country’s leader, Obama worked diligently to address civil rights, health care, climate change and more.

Today, as co-host of a podcast with Bruce Springsteen and a Netflix narrator, he continues to be one of the most photographed people on earth.

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

Gage Skidmore

Having been married to one of the most controversial leaders in the country, Hillary Clinton is undoubtedly one of the most photographed people on the planet.

Starting her career at Yale Law School, where she also met her future husband, Bill Clinton, Hillary gradually became a respected and familiar face in the political arena as an advisor on the infamous Watergate scandal.

In the 1990s, when Bill Clinton served as the U.S. President, he also admitted to inappropriate conduct with an intern. Hillary stood by her husband, and the two became another one of the most photographed celebrity couples of the time.

Hillary soon started on a political path of her own, which included roles as senator and secretary of state prior to running for office in 2008 and 2016.

Today, Hillary Clinton continues to attract attention as a firm advocate for legal action against Donald Trump.

Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson on stage

Construcentro

Legendary pop icon and creator of the dancing moonwalk, Michael Jackson was once the most photographed man in the world.

Holding the title of the King of Pop, Michael Jackson served as one of the most influential singers and dancers of all time.

Starting as the youngest member of the Jackson 5 musical group, Michael Jackson soon became a trailblazer in the music industry as one of the first African American stars on MTV.

While he, unfortunately, garnered negative feedback from the public due to his ever-evolving appearance from extensive plastic surgery, he continued to be one of the most commonly seen faces in photos.

He also continued to receive negative reactions due to erratic behavior and accusations of child abuse — which continued to make him a fixture in the tabloids.

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe

Photoplay

Though some sources claim she was born with the last name Baker, Marilyn came from humble beginnings as Norma Jean Mortensen.

Born in Los Angeles in 1926, Norma Jean had an unhappy childhood marked by a mentally unstable mother and frequent moves to different foster homes.

Determined to escape her abusive first husband, Norma Jean dyed her hair its signature blonde color and adopted Marilyn Monroe as a stage name before beginning her career as an alluring, all-American pinup girl. This is when the camera first fell in love with Marilyn.

Her wholesome beauty, girl-next-door sex appeal and curvaceous figure led her to find fame in no time and she began to be one of the most popular women in film and photos — something she wasn’t always mentally equipped to handle.

Looking for love in a series of failed marriages, Marilyn turned to alcohol and an array of drugs to alleviate her chronic anxiety and depression.

Though she died at the premature age of just 36, Marilyn continues to be a glamourous icon whose beauty stands the test of time.

Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth II yellow dress and hat

BillIngalls

Shortly before her death in September, Queen Elizabeth II was indubitably one of the most photographed people on earth in 2022.

As the longest-ruling monarch in the history of the UK, the Queen earned respect and admiration of her citizens and those all over the globe.

During her reign of more than 70 years, the Queen redefined the British royal family — breaking outdated royal rules by casually walking towards a crowd of eager citizens as opposed to waving from a cautious distance.

She continued to work against the traditional rules of the British royal family by allowing her son, Prince Charles, to wed Diana as part of a televised event that came to be known as the wedding of the century.

Up until her death, the Queen was one of the most influential and inspirational women on earth and part of one of the most photographed celebrity families ever — something her legacy will continue to carry for years to come.

Charles III

Charles III

MarkJones

Even before becoming the King of the United Kingdom, Charles III was sought out by English photographers as the heir apparent.

Becoming the Prince of Wales in 1958, Prince Charles joined the House of Lords 12 years later. Growing up as the son of the Queen set a great amount of responsibility upon Charles’ shoulders, and he answered this calling to be a respectable role model by serving in the Royal Air Force.

He met his future first wife in the mid-1970s as a friend of her older sister, though the two didn’t become an item until a few years later.

Charles was encouraged to marry Diana and did so in July of 1981, which led to the pair becoming one of the most photographed celebrity couples ever.

This attracted tremendous media attention that led to Charles III becoming one of the most prominent subjects of the British tabloids — something that continued during his separation and divorce from Diana, his publicized affair with Camilla Bowles and his public proclamation as King.

Princess Diana

Princess Diana pearl necklace black dress

Nick Parfjonov

Embodying an ideal combination of beauty, brains and humanitarianism, Princess Diana was most definitely England’s sweetheart.

After marrying Charles III, who was still Prince Charles at the time, she gave birth to two sons and embarked on a journey dedicated to charities and fundraising.

To balance out the lavish and privileged lifestyle her sons experienced on a day-to-day basis, Diana frequently had them join her on charitable excursions to hospitals and homeless shelters to give them perspective and compassion.

Considered to be the most photographed woman in the world during her lifetime, Diana’s tragic death in 1997 led to significant public mourning and a legacy that sparks curiosity to this day.

Pope John Paul II

Pope John Paul II

QuirinaleIt

Pope John Paul II was another frequently captured face in photos during his time as the leader of the Catholic Church from 1978 until he died in 2005.

The first Polish and non-Italian pope, John Paul II, led with a determination for world peace and religious acceptance, which included public, heartfelt apologies to historically scapegoated groups: Jews and Muslims.

During his impressive reign as Pope, John Paul II helped encourage national independence, as well as religious rights and human rights.  

Today, he’s fondly remembered for his passionate pleas centered on human rights and slightly more accepting Catholicism.

Other Commonly Photographed People

Who is the most photographed woman ever?

  • Queen Elizabeth II — a female leader whose reign spanned 70 years makes her an undeniable contender.
  • Princess Diana — Many would consider Princess Diana to be the winner.
  • Marilyn Monroe — There’s a reason her name keeps popping up! This sex icon is another contender for obvious reasons.

Who was the most photographed person of the 18th century?

  •  George Washington — Though modern-day photography didn’t exist, America’s first leader would be a clear winner.
  • Benjamin Franklin — Wearing many hats as a writer, inventor, scientist and more make him a contender.
  • John Adams — He stands as a third potential winner as America’s second official leader.

Who was the most photographed person of the 19th century?

  •  Frederick Douglas — He reportedly sat for more than 150 portraits.
  • Queen Victoria — Not surprising for another Queen to hold this title.
  • Teddy Roosevelt — America’s youngest elected president to date.

Who was the most photographed person of the 20th century?

  • Princess Diana — Princess Diana’s ties to the Royal family, made her a contender for the most frequently pictured person in the 20th century.
  • Marilyn Monroe — A pinup icon with undeniable sex appeal, it’s no wonder she’s on our list!
  • Elvis Presley — One of the names first attached to rock and roll make him another potential holder of this coveted title.

Who is the most photographed person of the 21st century?

  • Barack Obama — One of the first African Americans to hold office in the U.S. makes him an indisputable contender for this title.
  • Donald Trump — One of the most scandalous figures to date, it’s not surprising why he’s on the list.
  • Taylor Swift — Appealing to young women everywhere since 2008 with narrative, relatable lyrics.  

Final Words

Although the most commonly photographed people on earth will constantly evolve, there’s no doubt that actors, members of royalty, socialites and other famous people tend to hold the title for years at a time.

Whether you want to learn more about public figures from the past century or simply want to read about some popular events in history, this article has you covered.

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jeffcollier
Shotkit Writer, Product Tester & Instagram Manager

Jeff Collier is an experienced film photographer who enjoys experimenting with modern digital photography equipment, software and apps. He’s also an ex-world champion triathlete and avid cyclist, clocking hundreds of km each week in the beautiful Tweed Valley of northern NSW, Australia.

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