Poet. Follower of light. Storyteller. A remembrance of photographer Stanley Greene.

An American poet and photojournalist, Stanley Greene died Thursday night after a long illness in Paris, surrounded by friends and fellow photographers. He was 68.

Greene followed the light even into the darkest places. He was best known as a conflict photographer for his work in Chechnya, Russia, Iraq and Syria. He had the gift of finding beauty in the most extraordinarily disturbing circumstances. His books, “Open Wound” and “Black Passport,” are gorgeous journeys through his life by way of his haunting photographs.

Greene loved film and despised what he referred to as the “lies” of digital photography. He was a co-founder of Noor Images, where his visual archive will remain. In a Photo Raw interview at the Visa Pour l’Image photojournalism festival in 2009, he said, “Photography — It’s my church. It’s my religion. And I am very protective of it.”

Born in Brooklyn in 1949, Greene was the son of artists and lived most of his life following his heart with a Leica in his hand.  He was mentored early on by legendary photographer W. Eugene Smith, who was among the first to encourage him to channel his passion into photography. His full obit can be read here.