Joey L. is a Canadian-born photographer and director based in Brooklyn, New York. Since the age of 18, Joey’s work has been consistently sought out by a number of prominent advertising clients, including Lavazza for their 2016 calendar, National Geographic Channel, U.S. Army, Canon, Jose Cuervo, Summit Entertainment, History Channel, The Government of Abu Dhabi, and many others. He has photographed a number of recognizable faces including Robert De Niro, Danny DeVito, Jennifer Lawrence, Jessica Chastain, John Legend, Dylan McDermott, Karlie Kloss, Author John Green, and two-time Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas to name a few. His work is regularly seen in magazines, subway advertisements, and billboards.
His own curiosity for different ways of living have brought him to new and unfamiliar territories—from areas as far away as the holy lands of Varanasi—a trip that he first took as a teenager, which served as the catalyst for the self-titled film and foundation for his ongoing Holy Men series—to culturally-distinct neighborhoods tucked away between the graffitied-streets of Brooklyn—as depicted by his annual pilgrimage to document Halloween in Brooklyn—a favorite personal project. A firm believer in fostering creativity and fulfillment through personal pursuits, Joey wrote and directed his first scripted film entitled People of the Delta. The film not only featured members of the Daasanach and Hamar groups of Southern Ethiopia as the actors, but also collaborated with many of them for creative input throughout the entire film.
Joey and his team maintain a quirky web series aptly named Dudes with Cameras, inspired by his humorous behind-the-scenes escapades on shoots—giving viewers a look into how unpredictable and entertaining life on set can be. The birds-eye-view of his photography methods—whether it be through his blog, tutorials, or videos—demonstrates that it’s not always the technique that makes a good photograph, but one’s personal connection to the subjects—as well as the client—that truly makes an image resonate.
Most recently, Joey traveled twice to the Kurdish regions of Iraq and Syria to document the volunteer fighters of the PKK and YPG. The new series, Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan, highlight the men and women on the frontline of the ongoing conflict with ISIS—a war that is headlined daily but now humanized through Joey’s enlightening portraits. The project was featured in Vanity Fair: Italia, Internazionale and ran as The Independent's Saturday Magazine cover story.
Joey has been listed as one of the “Most Influential Photographers on Social Media”; Complex Magazine named him one of the “30 Photographers under 30 to Watch”; and he has been recently featured in London’s National Portrait Gallery as part of the Taylor Wessing Prize exhibition.
~written by Summer Rayne Oakes, author
"Joey L. is an entirely new breed of photographer who brings photojournalism to the fine art arena. The dignity and beauty that he portrays in peoples of rapidly vanishing cultures are incredibly important in getting their message out to the world."
Dr. Peter Keller, President, Bowers Museum
"These exquisite images evoke in the most powerful and glorious way the place of origin of all humanity. From Africa, 40,000 years ago, our human ancestors began their great journey and within 2500 generations carried the human imagination to every corner of the habitable world. "
Wade Davis, National Geographic Explorer, Ethnobotanist, Anthropologist, Author
"Joey L's subjects present themselves with an artistry which bridges the gap between them and the viewer. We see their frailty, and their pride and resilience in confronting our myopia, which condemns them as backward, dispensable, and moribund ‘primitives'. Joey L's art penetrates their exoticism and shows us the sheer beauty of our shared humanity, with all its tragedy and hope."
Stephen Corry, Director, Survival International
"The images are breath taking and this collection is alive with the all universal vibrations of our existence"
Joey’s forthcoming book “We Came from Fire: Kurdistan’s Armed Struggle Against ISIS.”will be published by powerHouse books
December 05, 2017
The Guardian features Joey’s new humanitarian project for WaterAid, photographed in Sierra Leone.
November 30, 2017
An interview and feature on Joey appears in Canada Goose’s new brand book “Greatness is Out There”, published by Assouline.
November 28, 2017
Joey’s film “Born From Urgency” was screened across cities in Northern Syria as part of the Rojava Film Festival
November 22, 2017
Vimeo recognizes Joey’s new film “Born From Urgency” with a Staff Pick.
September 20, 2017
Petapixel highlights Joey’s new series from Iraq and Syria
September 13, 2017
Born From Urgency is featured on Fstoppers
September 07, 2017
Joey’s new photo-essay from Syria “Welcome to Raqqa” is published on SOFREP
August 03, 2017
Sean Dunne Interviews Joey L. for his podcast, Very Ape
January 21, 2017
Scott Horton Interviews Joey L. For The Libertarian Institute
January 16, 2017
Oxfam features Joey's work in "A Year in Pictures by Oxfam"
December 31, 2016
Vice shares Joey's Work with Oxfam in Qayyarah, Iraq
December 15, 2016
Fstoppers Writes About Joey's Photos of the ISIS torched Oil Wells in Qayyarah, Iraq
December 02, 2016
PetaPixel Interviews Joey about "The Day the Sun Never Rose"
November 29, 2016
UK Publication - The Times Publishes "The Day the Sun Never Rose" by Joey L. and Benedetta Argentieri
November 25, 2016
PetaPixel features Joey's Lavazza Calendar Shoot
October 19, 2016
People of the Delta is Featured on MUSICBED BLOG
September 27, 2016
Vimeo Features People of the Delta as a "Staff Pick"
August 22, 2016
Amanda Arnold interviews Joey L. for Professional Photographer Magazine
July 05, 2016
People of the Delta Screens at Palm Springs International Shorts Fest and Rhode Island International Film Festival
June 27, 2016
Jasper van Bladel Interviews Joey L. for Digifoto Pro
June 09, 2016
People of the Delta Screens at Soho Shorts Fest and Hoboken Film Festival
June 05, 2016
People of the Delta Screens at Addis Film Festival and Cinema at the Edge
May 07, 2016
People of the Delta Wins Three Awards at NYC Independent Film Fest - "Best Short", "Best Director", and "Best Cinematographer"
April 29, 2016
People of the Delta Screens at Sun Valley Film Festival and Nashville Film Festival
March 17, 2016
"Portrait of Sarya" from Joey's new series, Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan is on display at London's National Portrait Gallery as part of the Taylor Wessing Exhibition from November 12 - February 21
November 10, 2015
Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan wins Grand Jury Award at Zero Film Festival.
November 06, 2015
Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan wins First Place in the Professional Portrait category, International Photography Awards, 2015
September 30, 2015
Lavazza launches their 2016 calendar, "Earth Defenders" created by Joey L. in collaboration with Lavazza and Slow Food
September 27, 2015
Doug Klinger interviews Joey L. about Vimeo Staff Pick, "Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan" for The Vimeo Blog
July 21, 2015
Mimi Chiahemen interviews Joey L. about "Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan" for Rudaw, a Kurdish News Organization.
July 17, 2015
The Independent Covers Joey L.'s personal photo project on the Guerrilla Fighters of Kurdistan.
June 05, 2015
Interview for Musicbed's Blog, "Film + Music"
May 08, 2015
Joey launches a new video series taking a peep at life on set around the world, narrated by him and his crew.
April 12, 2015
The New Yorker drops by Joey’s studio to peep an upcoming photoshoot with Michael K. Williams for the ACLU
December 15, 2014
Complex Magazine names Joey L. one of “30 Photographers Under 30 to Watch”
November 13, 2014
The New York Times features Joey L’s ongoing series “Halloween in Brooklyn”
October 30, 2014
Huffington Post features “Halloween in Brooklyn”
October 30, 2014
Joey L. named one of Top 30 Influential Photographers on Social Media
July 09, 2014
Interview for Petapixel
March 03, 2014
Bored Panda features “Holy Men” series from Varanasi, India
February 26, 2014
Interview for The Wild Magazine
February 03, 2014
“Learn From Joey L” Video Tutorial Site Launches
December 05, 2013
Interview for FStoppers
March 01, 2013