In 1981, Graham completed his first acclaimed work, A1: The Great North Road, a series of color photographs made along A1, Great Britain’s longest numbered road. His use of color film in the early 1980s, at a time when British photography was dominated by traditional black-and-white social documentary, had a revolutionizing effect on the genre. Soon a new school of photography emerged with artists like Martin Parr, Richard Billingham, Simon Norfolk, and Nick Waplington making the switch to color.
In 2011, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, acquired the complete set of prints from The Great North Road, the original set Graham had used to print his first book in 1983. Over the past three decades, Graham has travelled widely, producing twelve distinct bodies of work. He has been the subject of more than eighty solo exhibitions worldwide.