Astrid Kirchherr, the German photographer whose early shots of The Beatles helped turn them into icons, has died aged 81.
She took the first photo of the band in Hamburg in 1960, and is credited with helping develop their visual style.
Her death was announced by Beatles historian Mark Lewisohn, who said she died in the city on Wednesday following a short illness.
“Her gift to the Beatles was immeasurable,” he wrote on Twitter.
Kirchherr first came across the band when she visited a nightclub in her native Hamburg where they were playing.
“It was like a merry-go-round in my head, they looked absolutely astonishing,” she later told Beatles biographer Bob Spitz. “My whole life changed in a couple of minutes. All I wanted was to be with them and to know them.”
Danke schön, Astrid Kirchherr. Intelligent, inspirational, innovative, daring, artistic, awake, aware, beautiful, smart, loving and uplifting friend to many. Her gift to the Beatles was immeasurable. She died in Hamburg on Wednesday, a few days before turning 82. RIP. pic.twitter.com/c8UHNK1tj4