Photographer Joy Philippi

I grew upon a farm in the plains of rural Nebraska. There I developed an appreciation of family, community, and agriculture. My parents’ influence on my values took hold as they encouraged me to become active in our small town, 4-H, and with the gift of an instamatic camera, photography.

I took pictures wherever I went – school activities, family events, and life. I was hooked. I was watching people, documenting their stories visually, and becoming interested in what makes us all different.

My first 35 mm camera, something I didn’t have until after high school, was often sidelined in favor of the small, very portable instamatic.

Telling stories led me to a journalism major at a community college in Nebraska where my world was enlarged through interaction with other students and travel. I made my first trip to my current home, Washington, DC, and I was hit by the desire to explore the sites and wonder of this beautiful land.

My training in journalism opened doors to work on a successful weekly newspaper in Nebraska where my interest in photography was nurtured and expanded. From there I began a photography business which soon ended when the big box store in town arrived.

My career in production agriculture – another dream realized – led me to leadership in a national commodity organization. I was back in Washington, DC, frequently, traveled the world, and connected with fellow producers across the country. All the while, I was visually documenting the journey – looking beyond the tourist’s point of view to what makes cultures work.

We have so much in common. And I will be telling that story. The magnificent man-made creations and amazing wonders of nature together relate in harmony. And I capture the melody of life’s events – large and small.