Daniel Madden: Gateway to the Grand Canyon

Daniel Madden

Meet the Artist

It’s fair to say that photography became prevalent in my life at an early age. My summer days were spent at my grandparent’s house often helping my grandfather in his darkroom developing photos. A very gifted photographer himself, he imparted on me a passion for nature, monochromatic portraiture, and above all else, he taught me the practice of patience.

As I got older, photography kind of fell by the wayside until I left for college in 2009, and spent some time studying abroad shortly thereafter. Clad with nothing more than a rucksack, a loose itinerary and cheap point and shoot I picked up at RadioShack only days earlier, I set off to wander around Europe for six months (and occasionally attend class). For me, the real education was forged in exploration and documentation. It was addictive and I quickly became infatuated with it.

By the time I returned to the States, I had a much clearer vision of what I was going to do with my life. I was going to drop out of school, move to Boston and attend a Professional Photography school I found online. My parents nixed that idea quicker than I could say aperture (probably for the best). So, instead I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Communications from Plymouth State University in May 2012.

I spent that next summer at home in Pennsylvania making some money, and by autumn, the itch to travel had returned with a vengeance. An opportunity to sell merchandise for my friends’ band had come up at the bar one night in return for a fairly cheap month-long tour around the United States. Without much hesitation, I accepted. That experience sparked within me a deep and passionate love for the American landscape and its diverse demographic of inhabitants that hasn’t slowed down since. That trip would ultimately serve as the jumping-off point for a subsequent nine years of travel all around the world, and moreover, the rest of my life.

Today, when I see photos of my life in other places, I instantly want to don my rucksack, run out the door, jump in the car and hit the open road. But life evolves, new opportunities arise, and the draw of home is often unrelenting. Nowadays, my wife and I love our cozy apartment and the surrounding environment of our charming, little town. Whether that’s late-night backyard campfires, sipping cocktails with our friends at the Hotel B, evening strolls around the Historic District, or morning jaunts to The Joint for oat milk caps, we love it, and wouldn’t trade it for anything.