J.B. Russell was born in Long Beach, California to a restless family of adventurers, wanders and mystics. He grew up, among other places, in Princeton, New Jersey. After graduating from Denison University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology and Geography, he worked for two years as a geologist at Research Planning Institute in Boulder, Colorado. Before going on to graduate school, he decided to take a year or so off to pursue a passion for photography and to satisfy a genetic predisposition for wanderlust. Once on the road however, he never looked back. In 1994, following publications of his images from Cambodia and Cuba, J.B. attended the prestigious Eddie Adams Workshop and began working full-time as a photojournalist, collaborating with the Sygma Photo Agency until 2001.
J.B. has traveled and worked extensively in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Latin America focusing on current events, the human consequences of conflict and issues related to human security. His images appear regularly in magazines and newspapers, on the Internet, in books and in exhibitions worldwide. Clients include: Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, Paris Match, Geo, Courrier International, Le Nouvel Observateur, Stern, Der Spiegel, Facts, The London Times, The Guardian, Corriere Della Sera magazine, La Stampa Specchio, El Mundo magazine and many others.
J.B. Russell’s work has received numerous accolades, including the Public Prize at France's Bayeux War Correspondents Competition, 1st place in the Magazine News Story category of the POYi competition and the American Photo competition. His work has been selected for the American Photography annual and has also been exhibited and frequently featured at Visa Pour L'Image, the international photojournalism festival in Perpignan, France.
In addition to his photographic work, J.B has produced several video documentaries and multimedia projects, including Surviving The Peace, a 26-minute documentary film on the aftermath of Angola’s civil war, in collaboration with Mines Advisory Group.