David Hanson grew up in Atlanta, GA and attended Pace Academy (’96). He went on to Washington & Lee University (’00) to study English and Geology. He has worked as an educator in Olympic and Yosemite National Parks and the Boundary Waters of Minnesota.
In 2004 when David left Yosemite and returned to the south to become the travel editor with upstart Time Inc magazine, Cottage Living. During his four years with the magazine, David began collaborating on personal documentary projects with Michael, who had joined him in Birmingham to begin his photography career.
David, now a freelance writer/photographer, lives in Seattle working for magazines such as Southern Living, Mountain, Canoe & Kayak, US Airways, and Preservation. He is currently three years into a project with the non-profit WhyHunger and the USDA to gather stories and images from food justice initiatives throughout the US. In 2011 the University of California Press published Breaking Through Concrete, Hanson’s book about America’s urban farms (Michael Hanson was the photographer). David’s storytelling work has taken him to Ethiopia, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico, Alaska’s Mt McKinley, and the swamps of the Deep South. In 2009, David paddled solo down the length of the Chattahoochee River. That journey planted the seed for the current documentary film Who Owns Water, in which David, with brother Michael, returns to the Chattahoochee-Flint-Apalachicola Rivers to document the water crisis in Georgia, Florida, and Alabama.