Inside this issue
Joseph Rossbach is a full-time nature photographer based out of Virginia. Joe’s work keeps him busy leading workshops & tours, publishing work and pursuing his passion for landscape photography year round. You can view more of Joseph’s work and offerings on his website.
In 2012 I paused by my local river and everything changed. I’ve moved away from what many expect photographs to be: my images deconstruct the literal and reimagine the subjective, reflecting the curiosity that water has inspired in my practice. Water has been my conduit: it has sharpened my vision, given me permission to experiment and continues to introduce me to new ways of seeing.
Between travels, we’re catching up with US photographer Joseph Rossbach, who has a love of the outdoors and photography that began in his school days. He made the decision to commit to nature photography relatively early, and we talk about how he has made a career of it. He’s clearly happiest in the field and has estimated that he spends half his year travelling across the US. Joe still has his film cameras and occasionally uses them. In between the application and patience that he learned through film photography is applied to his digital work, whether open landscapes or complex woodland.
Would you like to start by telling readers a little about yourself – where you grew up and what your early interests were?
I grew up along the Chesapeake Bay in a somewhat rural area in Maryland and come from a tight knit family. I was raised by my stay at home Mom and Dad and have both a younger sister and a brother. Growing up through the 8’s, life was filled with playing outside, hiking, swimming in the bay, fishing and all kinds of outdoor pursuits. No computers, video games or cell phones during my childhood, which I am very thankful for. Not having those kinds of distractions allowed for lots of time with friends and family, and lots of adventures in the woods and through the neighborhood.
You went into photography straight out of high school. Did anything in particular prompt your choice of career and how hard was it to make it work financially?
That's true. When I graduated High School, I already had a love of photography and knew that I wanted to have some kind of a career in the medium. Art school is something I considered, but most of the photographic programs available were aimed towards commercial photography, such as glamour, portrait, etc. I knew I wanted to pursue outdoor photography and frankly, it seemed like it would be a waste of money at the time. So, I took jobs in photography freelancing for years. I learned a lot about the business of photography over those many years, and it also taught me about deadlines and responsibility. I made just enough money all those years to put it right back into travel, and enough ramen noodles to keep me fed.