I photographed Elon Musk's mother using the best Hasselblad camera

Maye Musk, mother of Elon Musk against a black background
(Image credit: Rory Lewis)

Whatever your opinion of him, Elon Musk might be one of the most famous men in the world. But celebrity photographer Rory Lewis recently set out to capture a portrait of his mother, Maye Musk, who is herself well known. 

Rory has photographed many famous faces, including Dame Judi Dench and presenters Ant & Dec. "Always seeking remarkable faces to capture, I invited Maye to sit for a portrait at the New York Studio," Rory tells Digital Camera World. As is usual for his style of lighting, Rory drew on his love of old master painters, as he wanted to recreate the atmosphere and tones of classical portraiture.

Maye Musk is a model and dietitian. She has been a model for 50 years, having appeared on the covers of magazines, including a Time magazine health edition, Women's Day, international editions of Vogue, and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.

"Although she is accustomed to modeling, it was a unique opportunity for Maye to be captured without the pomp of a traditional fashion cover," adds Rory. For the session, he used the latest Hasselblad X2D 100C camera, which is the company's flagship mirrorless medium format camera. 

With a 100-megapixel CMOS sensor and advancements in image quality, focusing, stabilization, responsiveness, and storage are built into the iconic Scandinavian design. Our Hasselblad X2D 100C review will tell you everything you need to know – we called it one of the best Hasselblad cameras ever!

Rory took to Instagram to share his shot of Maye Musk. User continuousshot said: "Well, you nail it again. The black-on-white, and the use of both upper and lower lighting to show the lines on truly intense expression. Very powerful."

Maye herself was also very complimentary and in a short behind-the-scenes clip, she says how much she enjoyed working with Rory. "He gives me good direction, and he capture's people's personalities in a serious way."


If you like portrait photography, check out the best lens for portraits and the best photography lighting kits.

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Lauren Scott
Freelance contributor/former Managing Editor

Lauren is a writer, reviewer, and photographer with ten years of experience in the camera industry. She's the former Managing Editor of Digital Camera World, and previously served as Editor of Digital Photographer magazine, Technique editor for PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine, and Deputy Editor of our sister publication, Digital Camera Magazine. An experienced journalist and freelance photographer, Lauren also has bylines at Tech Radar, Space.com, Canon Europe, PCGamesN, T3, Stuff, and British Airways' in-flight magazine (among others). When she's not testing gear for DCW, she's probably in the kitchen testing yet another new curry recipe or walking in the Cotswolds with her Flat-coated Retriever.