Jo-Anne McArthur

Photo by Josee Van Wissen

Jo-Anne McArthur is an award-winning photographer, author, photo editor, and sought-after speaker. Through her long-term body of work, We Animals, she has documented our complex relationship with animals around the globe. Since 1998, her work has taken her to over sixty countries. In 2019 she founded We Animals Media.

McArthur’s books include HIDDEN: Animals in the Anthropocene (We Animals Media, 2020), with co-editor Keith Wilson; Captive (Lantern Books, 2017); and We Animals (Lantern Books, 2014). Thousands of her images are available at the We Animals Media stock site. She has also been a jury member for World Press Photo and Mont Photo.

McArthur was the subject of the critically acclaimed 2013 documentary The Ghosts in Our Machine, which followed her as she documented the plight of abused and exploited animals and advocated for their rights as sentient beings.

McArthur’s photography and writing has been in publications such as National Geographic and National Geographic Traveller, The Washington Post, The Guardian,  Lens Culture, Medium, VICE, Canadian Geographic, DAYS Japan, Helsingin Sanomat, Der Spiegel, PhotoLife magazine, Huffington Post, Outdoor Photography, and Feature Shoot. In addition, We Animals images have been used by hundreds of organizations, publishers and academics to advocate for animals.

Recent awards include a Highly Commended image in the 2022 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition; the 2021 BigPicture Grand Prize; 2021 AEFONA’s First Prize, Man and Nature category; 2021 Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice finalist; 2020 Nature Photographer of the Year, Man and Nature category winner; 2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year, photojournalism category; Italy’s Festival of Ethical Photography award, Single Shot; Austria’s Global Peace Award in 2018; and the 2017 Wildlife Photographer of the Year, People’s Choice category. In 2021, HIDDEN was awarded “Photography Book of the Year” by Pictures of the Year International (PoYI), and IPPY’s “Outstanding Book of the Year Most Likely to Save the Planet”.

McArthur speaks internationally at schools, universities, and conferences on the subjects of photojournalism, the human-animal relationship, social change, and empathy. Recent keynote speaking engagements have included the Norwegian Photography Festival, Wildscreen, the GDT Nature Photography Festival, the Minding Animals conference in Mexico, the Civic Journalism Lab at Newcastle University, England, Animal Legal Defense Fund conferences, Humane Canada’s annual animal welfare conference in Calgary, Canada, and at Harvard Law school.

In 2022, Jo-Anne was a Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at the University in Denver’s Department of Law, and in 2018, a visiting scholar at the University of British Colombia’s Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.

She hails from Toronto, Canada.

Speaking Engagements

To request a keynote, school or festival speaking engagement, please email jo@weanimals.org

Relevant Links

We Animals Media

Unbound Project