Artistic expression flows as freely as the Clark Fork River through our city, and when talented people come to a place as photogenic as Missoula you can expect awe-inspiring photography to follow. Iconic spots like the University of Montana campus and KettleHouse Amphitheater beg to be captured, while the surrounding wilderness offers untouched nature that can only be packed out via SD card. Lucky for us, Missoula is the arts and culture hub of Montana and continues to draw exceptional artists and creators our way. We couldn't begin to round up every artistic genius in Missoula—there aren't enough hours in the day—but we did find 17 local photographers who we simply can't get enough of. Get ready for some serious wanderlust, folks.
Brian Christianson has a knack for capturing the ebb and flow of Missoula, whether he's perched high above the hustle and bustle of city life or up close and personal with an icy river. Here we look down on Hellgate Canyon in the glow of moonlight and headlights.
We'd roam with Alex any day if this is where he's headed. Rock Creek is a quick drive from Missoula, though you'll find shots from across the whole state (and world, for that matter) when scrolling through Alex's Instagram feed.
Nikon Ambassador and National Geographic magazine photographer Ami Vitale has traveled to more than 100 countries, bearing witness not only to violence and conflict, but also to surreal beauty and the enduring power of the human spirit. Throughout the years, Ami has lived in mud huts and war zones, contracted malaria, and donned a panda suit— keeping true to her belief in the importance of “living the story.” Currently based in Montana, Ami Vitale is a contract photographer with National Geographic magazine and frequently gives workshops throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia.
Michael Lloyd is behind the account @41digital, and he lives the Montana lifestyle we know and love. Beware, though: if you've been aching to get out fishing, hunting or hiking around Missoula then you're about to experience some serious envy when visiting this Instagram account.
Tiffany Folkes fell in love with Montana while attending school at the University of Montana School of Journalism and couldn't find the desire to leave after she graduated. She loves exploring new places around the state in between visiting old favorites, like annual trips to Glacier National Park. “I can't wait for the new adventures that summer will bring, always taking friends and camera along to seek out the best places to watch the sun rise, perfect hammocking spots and diverse mountainscapes to inspire my photography.”
Many local photographers focus on the great outdoors, but Jeffrey's account, @neubauer_media, dives into a different aspect of Missoula culture: the absolutely epic, ever-growing, I-can't-believe-that-band-came-here music scene. If you haven't already splurged on summer concert tickets, his shots of the KettleHouse Amphitheater will persuade you.
Troy Schlimgen has been doing something pretty special with his account, @bigsky_photography. As part of a "52 Week Photo Challenge," Troy hiked to the same spot on Waterworks Hill every single week for an entire year. The result? An Instagram account that beautifully captures our city as it moves through each season.
Eric’s account captures the quintessential essence of Montana in every shot he posts. While he is based in Missoula, his feed consists of photographs from all over. Give him a follow for stunning photographs of the pacific northwest to keep your traveling itch satisfied!
It feels like Jordan Lefler is always on the move throughout Montana when you scroll through his Instagram feed. From ski slopes, to wildlife, to mellow city lights like these, you can count on Jordan to inspire your next trip to the Last Best Place.
Maggie’s instagram feed is saturated with stunning shots of the Big Sky state. She grew up in Great Falls, Montana, instilling a love for wide open spaces and rolling prairies. Where the skies and land meet with endless horizons, she now resides in western Montana—home of long winding rivers and heavily forested land. Since she has lived in many different parts of the state, she loves to capture Montana’s vast and varying landscapes. “You don’t have to venture far to get great photos and I’m still learning and teaching myself that. Photograph with what you have and where you are.”
Martino is a graduate from the University of Montana School of Journalism. He has since become a photojournalist at papers in Michigan and Wyoming before rejoining the Missoulian as a staff photographer. After four years at the Missoulian, Tommy took a new position as a staff photographer at the University of Montana. Tommy photographs everything relating to the UM campus, including student life, academics and athletics. Give him a follow to keep up with everything Griz!
If you've been to Missoula, there's a chance you've been to Black Coffee Roasting Company for an impressive cup of organic coffee. You might even follow them on Instagram already at @ourblackcoffee. But many people don't realize they have another account, @blackcoffee.mt, fully stocked with photography that captures the region in a clean and simplistic layout.
Morgan Hahn is a Griz student and capturer of sunsets in Missoula and beyond. The best thing about following a photographer who attends the University of Montana has to be the photos of campus that take on a new color palette every season.
Elias Snyders is a Missoula-based creator who takes full advantage of his surroundings, whether he's scaling mountains in Glacier National Park or taking a quick evening hike up Mount Sentinel. We wonder if he ever goes inside. If big mountains, lakes, rivers and roads are your cup of tea, @eliassnyders is your next follow.
Alex Kim is a photographer based in Missoula, although he takes his camera outdoors just about every chance he gets. Alex is a graduate from the University of Montana journalism program and is using his experience in photojournalism to capture Missoula’s diverse community in their element. Alex’s primary focus in his photography is to capture Missoulians playing, sporting, existing and, most importantly, thriving in our beautiful backyard.
Matt Hammerstein is based in Missoula, though his Instagram bio reads "Montana Visuals (More or Less)." And we love that. Scroll through Matt's Instagram feed to join him on far off journeys, and then keep scrolling to return home to his photos of Missoula
Makayla Crist's adventures span far and wide, and her Instagram account is a testament to that. While she is "based in the Bitterroots," it's not rare to find Makayla off on long road trips or traveling abroad. Be sure to check out her Instagram story highlights when you go to her account—it's easy to get lost in them!
Sign up for our enewsletter
Start planning your vacation. Get our newsletter for must-see adventures, exclusive deals, upcoming events and much more.