During the period 1900-20 significant developments emerged in Greek photography, and issues concerning the aesthetics of photography and its emancipation as an independent form of art were raised.

In 1902 in the arts periodical Pinakothiki (Gallery) the first article dealing with photography as art as opposed to technique was published (Konstantinos Konsolas, I fotografiki tehni (The Art of Photography). New aesthetic concepts were thus formulated that reveal familiarization with modern photographic tendencies, and Greek photographers participated in international exhibitions. The established traditional framework, however, remained dominant. In 1903 the first technical photography book was published in Greece by V. D. Raptopoulos (Fotografia itoi praktiki methodos pros ekmathisin tis forgrafikis technis meth'olon ton kladon tis), while in 1907 Eikonografimeni, a monthly periodical with photo-journalism, displayed colour photographs for the first time in Greece.

Wartime photo-journalism came to the fore during the Balkan Wars. From these much photographed wars we have, in addition to the pre-composed, static photographs, pictures of realistic action. Most of the photographers remain anonymous. They were probably soldiers and officers who had taken along with them a photographic camera. Naturally there were also professionals. Panorama tou Polemou 1912-1913, a publication by . Konstandinidis, photographer and zincographer, stands out as being exceptional.
The Asia Minor Campaign up to the Catastrophe of Smyrna was covered by the Asia Minor painter Yorgos Prokopiou in his capacity both as photographer and cinematographer. With the assistance of the French consul the boxes containing his films and paintings were smuggled illegally abroad, while he himself managed to escape from the Turkish prisons,

where he was incarcerated and sentenced to death, and reached Greece in the Christmas of 1922.

In 1916 the Association of Greek Photographers (F) was established, and in 1920 the protection of photographic creation was guaranteed by the then progressive law 'on intellectual property'. In 1920 there were 46 photographers in Athens and 7 in Piraeus. In 1912-13 the first travelling photographers emerged with their characteristic wooden (later elaborately decorated) cameras on tripods, which developed films in a few minutes. In 1920 there were 250 such travelling photographers. Towards the end of the 1920s the institution of the weekly studio photograph evolved, usually artistic portraits, delivered to the client within a week, a period required by the photographer to develop and edit the photograph. The major photographers of the period included Spyros Kokolis, Epameinondas Xanthopoulos, Antonis Milionis and Anastasios Gaziadis, although there were others not only in Athens but in Asia Minor, Egypt and elsewhere. The brothers Yannis and Miltiadis Manakis from Epirus were 'the pioneers of cinema in the Balkans'. In Greece the first film company, Asty Film, which produced newsfilms, was established in 1916 by Dimos Vratsanos.