After 2024 Texas School
by Rob Hull
It’s difficult to find anyone in this industry that is more revered and loved than Tony Corbell. Everyone you meet is Tony’s friend, and they all have stories about how Tony has helped them. After many long years, Tony has announced that he is finally retiring from teaching photography and that the next Texas School will be his last.
Over the past forty some odd years, Tony has taught and inspired generations of photographers. His depth of knowledge and the experience that he brings to the classroom is extraordinary. In the world of photographers, Tony is in the stratosphere. He stood in Assembly Hall at the UN and photographed 189 world leaders – the largest gathering of world leaders in history.
Tony was also entrusted by the Smithsonian to photograph the Star-Spangled Banner – the original garrison flag that flew over Fort McHenry in 1814. It was years later that one of his students in a class told him that he was a special forces sniper and was in the rafters of the building, assigned to covertly “ensure the safety of the flag” during the photography sessions. The list of Tony’s clients is a veritable Who’s Who of corporations, celebrity, and politics. It’s a list that could make anyone feel self-important and vain. But Tony is a unique breed. He’s humble and totally unpretentious. When he walks into the classroom, he is an open book. He brings a humble heart, a boyish sense of humor, a giving spirit, and a depth of knowledge second to none.
This is the last year you can say “I took Tony’s class”. To some it may look like he will be leaving a huge gaping hole in Texas School. But the reality is just the opposite. So many of the instructors that you see at Texas School owe much of their knowledge and passion for photography to Tony. There will be a little bit of Tony in Texas School classes for many years to come.