Photosynthesis is a fundamental biological process involving the conversion of solar energy into chemical energy. The initial photochemical and photophysical events of photosynthesis are mediated by photosystem II (PSII) and photosystem I (PSI). Both PSII and PSI are multi-subunit supramolecular machineries composed of a core complex and a peripheral antenna system. The antenna system serves to capture light energy and transfer it to the core efficiently. Both PSII and PSI in the green lineage (plants and green algae) and PSI in red algae have an antenna system comprising a series of chlorophyll- and carotenoid-binding membrane proteins belonging to the light-harvesting complex (LHC) superfamily, including LHCII and LHCI. However, the antenna size and subunit composition vary considerably in the two photosystems from diverse organisms. On the basis of the plant and algal LHCII and LHCI structures that have been solved by X-ray crystallography and single-particle cryo-electron microscopy we review the detailed structural features and characteristic pigment properties of these LHCs in PSII and PSI. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Light harvesting, edited by Dr. Roberta Croce.