My breakthrough moment

Leading creatives tell us about their first significant piece of work

My Breakthrough Moment: Maira Kalman

The illustrator and writer discusses how, already 30 years into her career, a commission from the New York Times for a column called Principles of Uncertainty opened up a myriad of new possibilities

My Breakthrough Moment: Dean Chalkley

“Photography can be a thing unto itself. It’s more than documentation.” Dean Chalkley discusses how his 2005 portrait of Noel Gallagher marked a personal turning point in terms of culture and photography

My Breakthrough Moment: Simon Buckley

“I wanted to be Ultravox, but sometimes I worry I’ve ended up like Joe Dolce.” Simon Buckley’s photograph of Manchester in the rain became a viral sensation in 2019. He explains what happened next

My Breakthrough Moment: Kevin Cummins

Having shot some of the biggest bands in the world and worked as the NME’s chief photographer for a decade, Kevin Cummins reflects on why his 2009 book Manchester: Looking For The Light Through The Pouring Rain marked a distinct turning point in his career

My Breakthrough Moment: Flo Ngala

Fresh from her BTS shots of internet-breaking music video WAP, Flo Ngala discusses how an early commission to photograph Cardi B helped her earn her stripes as the artist’s go-to photographer for everything from the Met Gala to her daughter’s first birthday party

My Breakthrough Moment: Jon Burgerman

In this series we ask leading creatives to talk about what projects or events kickstarted their careers. Here, artist Jon Burgerman, who has a fondness for googly eyes, talks about how his move to New York City led to a breakthrough in his practice

My breakthrough moment: Annie Atkins

Annie Atkins tells us about the props that started off her illustrious career as a graphic designer for film; those delicious ‘millennial pink’ Mendl’s boxes that enjoy a lot of screen time in Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel