Elsa Dorfman (born April 26, 1937) is an American portrait photographer who works in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She is now known for her use of a large-format instant Polaroid camera.
Her principal published work, originally published in 1974, is Elsa’s Housebook – A Woman’s Photojournal, a photographic record of family and friends who visited her in Cambridge when she lived there during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Many well known people, especially literary figures associated with the Beat generation, are prominent in the book, including Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky, Gary Snyder, Gregory Corso, and Robert Creeley, in addition to people who would become notable in other fields, such as radical feminist Andrea Dworkin and civil rights lawyer Harvey A. Silverglate (who would become Dorfman’s husband). She has also photographed staples of the Boston rock scene such as Jonathan Richman frontman of The Modern Lovers, and Steven Tyler of Aerosmith.