He began his career in the theatre, co-founding the « Théâtre X » company.
In 1988, he took a highly successful series of black and white photographs of human figures reflected in distorting mirrors. Several books followed.
In 1993, he became interested in uncontrolled postures, plunging his subjects into darkness in a studio and ‘painting’ their outlines with a beam of light, the intrusion of light creating accidents of form.
In 2007, he took a complete break from studio work and produced a powerfully dreamlike series of photographs of children in Africa.The book « Dreamt memories from Africa » followed. He then became a teacher, running workshops all around the world and elsewhere.
He began working with colour in 2010, revisiting the same themes and taking inspiration from classical paintings. In 2012 The Musee de la Photography in Belgium and the Maison Européennne de la Photographie in Paris organized jointly a succesful rétrospective exhibition
The book « William Ropp 20 years of Photography » was launched for this occasion.
Today, his works form part of some of the greatest public collections