Most of my images are taken from intensive documentary...
Most of my images are taken from intensive documentary projects I'm working on, including former slave dwellings across the US, threatened old-growth forests, farm animals in sanctuaries, the last anthracite miners, and the changing landscape of my rural hometown.  My photography is about telling the story of a place.
The slow method of film and darkroom suits the style of storytelling I favor. I print the large format negatives as silver gelatin photographs and often use fine brushes to pick out selected details with blends of toners and lighteners.
My affinity for rural scenes comes from growing up on a farm surrounded by Amish neighbors. I went on to get my university degrees and worked as an engineer in the southwest before returning to the East to photograph the changes in rural life.


I use three film cameras:
a hand-built Phillips 8x16” ultra-large-format view camera, a 4x5” field view camera, and a medium-format Hasselblad. I work with only the available light and no distortion filters or digital altering. Images are printed by me in a traditional wet darkroom. I prefer using film, feeling more of a connection with the cameras and darkroom.

Selected Awards & Exhibitions:

Rust Belt Biennial Exhibition, Sordoni Gallery, Wilkes Barre, PA 2019
  • Royal Photographic Society, International Print Competition, Bath, UK 2014
  • Selected for the New York Times Portfolio Review, NYC, NY 2014
  • Solo exhibition, Hard Coal, Hoyt Center for the Arts, New Castle, PA 2014
  • Hoyt Center for the Arts, Mid-Atlantic Juried Exhibition, New Castle, PA 2013, 2007
  • 2013 Portraits Exhibition, Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, Colorado
  • First Prize, Photography: Art of the State', State Museum, Harrisburg, PA, 2012
  • 'Black & White Photography,' Photoplace Gallery, Middlebury, VT 2011
  • Merit Award (Landscape/Nature), Black & White Magazine, Single Image Contest 2011
  • Semi-finalist, ‘Hasselblad Masters’ Copenhagen, Denmark 2008
  • Yosemite Museum Gallery, Yosemite, California Fall 1998
  • Grand Prize, Natural World Photography Competition, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1994

Joel Anderson Photography

Fine Art and Documentary Photography
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