Bear Guerra is a photographer who focuses on humanitarian, environmental, and social justice issues.
In addition to editorial assignments, he often works on long-term projects, and collaborates frequently with non-profit organizations working for human rights and on environmental issues. His photo essays and images have been published and exhibited widely, both in the United States and abroad.
He is currently a Ted Scripps Fellow in Environmental Journalism for the 2013-2014 academic year at the University of Colorado - Boulder. In 2012, he was chosen as a Blue Earth Alliance project photographer for his ongoing project "La Carretera: Life Along Peru's Interoceanic Highway". Other recent recognitions have included an honorable mention in the 2012 Photocrati Fund competition for the same project; he was a finalist for a National Magazine Award in Photojournalism (2010); and has been the recipient of funding from the Society of Environmental Journalists, the Puffin Foundation, the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting, and the Christensen Fund/Project Word.
Bear was also recently the photographer and creative director for the (In)Visible Project - a mobile, multimedia installation that offers a human portrait of homelessness in San Diego, as well as a lead instructor at the AjA Project - a participatory photography program that works with refugee youth in San Diego.
A native of San Antonio, TX, Bear is currently based in Boulder, CO where he lives with his daughter, Camila, and wife and collaborator, journalist Ruxandra Guidi. Guidi and Guerra often work together under the name Fonografia Collective to produce local and international print, radio, and multimedia stories.
Roberto (Bear) Guerra
Bear Guerra is a photographer who focuses on humanitarian, environmental, and social issues. His work has been published and exhibited widely in the United States and abroad; and he collaborates regularly with non-profit organizations working for human rights and the environment.
work experience highlights
Freelance Photographer | 2004-Present (in the U.S. and abroad)
Client list | Publications: The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Magazine, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Time.com, Orion Magazine, National Geographic NewsWatch, Boston Globe Magazine, Virginia Quarterly Review, On Earth, Pro Publica, BBC's The World, California Watch, Glamour, Texas Monthly, National Public Radio, KPCC, Earth Island Journal, Ms. Magazine, NACLA Magazine, Yes! Magazine, World Vision Report, SEED Magazine, The Walrus, Guernica. Nonprofit Organizations: International Rescue Committee, Doctors Without Borders, Lambi Fund of Haiti, Children's Environmental Health Institute, Community Water Center, Environmental Water Caucus, Collective Roots, Other Worlds, Immigration Justice Project, Fundación Nueva Cultura del Agua (Spain)
Production Assistant (Photographer/Videographer, Temporary) | Summer 2012
KPCC Public Radio | Pasadena, CA
Photo and video for daily news assignments in the greater Los Angeles, CA area.
Lead Photography Instructor | April-October 2011
The AjA Project | San Diego, CA
Taught refugee youth to use photography to address social issues in San Diego, CA.
First Camera Assistant/Studio Manager | Fall 2001-Spring 2005
Dan Winters Photography - Austin, TX
First camera assistant for award-winning editorial & commercial photographer.
Responsibilities included: equipment maintenance & care; set & prop construction; film processing; custom black and white printing; negative scanning; digital retouching; exhibition quality framing; graphic design; negative & print archiving; lighting, photo shoot production; international travel, etc.
University of Notre Dame - South Bend, IN | 1991-1995
Bachelor of Arts - Anthropology / Concentration - Peace Studies
Photographer, "La Carretera: Life Along Peru's Interoceanic Highway" (Print/Multimedia to be published in Orion Magazine, Spring 2013)
Multiple locations in Peru | April 2010-Present
Ongoing in-depth documentation of life and change in Southeastern Peru, where a new highway is having a profound environmental and social impact.
Photographer/Creative Director, The (In)Visible Project (multimedia installation)
Multiple locations in San Diego, CA | April 2011-Present
Photographic and multimedia installation that presents an intimate and dignified human portrait of San Diego’s homeless population.
Photographer,"Will a UN Climate Change Solution Help Kuna Yala?", Panama (Print/Multimedia, National Geographic NewsWatch)
Multiple locations in Kuna Yala and Ipetí, Panama | October 2009, November 2010
Photographic essay and reporting about the effects of climate change and deforestation on indigenous Kuna and Emberá communities in Panama.
Photographer, "Earthquake Aftermath" + “Young Farmers” (Print/Multimedia, multiple outlets)
Multiple locations in Haiti | February, July 2010
Documentation of life following one of the most deadly natural disasters in history; and photo essay about young farmers in the Haitian countryside.
Photographer, "Mother of God, Child of Zeus" (Print/Online, Virginia Quarterly Review)Multiple locations in Madre de Dios state, Peru | April 2010
Photoessay accompanying print story about the expansion of illegal gold mining into the Peruvian Amazon, and the resulting environmental devastation.
Photographer, “Near/Far” (Print, Texas Monthly Magazine)
El Paso, TX, USA | June 2010
Imagery accompanying Nate Blakeslee’s article about El Paso, TX and other Texas border cities.
Photographer, “Water Policy in California” (Print/Online, Community Water Center)
Central Valley, CA, USA | March-May 2010
Photos for the Community Water Center, and imagery accompanying a report for the Environmental Water Caucus about disparities in water policy in California.
Photographer, “One Acre is More than Enough” (Print/Online, Collective Roots)
Palo Alto, CA, USA | May 2010
Photos for the Palo Alto, CA-based non-profit, Collective Roots, showcasing the urban farmers they support.
Photographer, "Children in Nature" (Exhibit, Fall 2010)
Multiple locations in Central Texas | Fall 2009 - Spring 2010
Series of photos on the theme of children interacting with nature to highlight the Austin, TX-based Children's Environmental Health Institute's mission. The series will be exhibited in multiple locations beginning in Fall 2010.
Photographer, "The Diseases at our Doorstep" (Print/Online, OnEarth Magazine)
Brownsville, TX USA & Matamoros, Mexico | July 2009
Photographic essay to illustrate print story about the spread of Dengue Fever along the Texas-Mexico border region.
Photographer, Life & Development Aid in Haiti (Print/Multimedia, multiple outlets)
Multiple locations in Haiti | September-October 2008
Imagery accompanying several stories about life in Haiti today, and the efficacy of development aid efforts.
Photographer, "Coca Sí, Cocaina No" (Photographic Essay/Multimedia, multiple outlets)
Los Yungas, Bolivia | January-March 2008
Imagery for print, photographic, multimedia, and radio stories about the lives of coca farmers in Bolivia.
Photographer, Aftermath of Pisco Earthquake (Photo/Multimedia, World Vision Report)
Pisco, Peru | September 2007
Documented ongoing clean-up and rebuilding efforts 2 months after a massive earthquake devastated Peruvian coastal communities.
Photographer, La Parota Dam Opposition Movement (Photo Essay/Print Story, Orion Magazine)
Bienes Comunales de Cacahuatepec, Mexico | September 2006
Photo essay about the grassroots movement opposing the construction of a hydroelectric dam in rural Mexico.
Photographer, Somalian Refugees Project (Photo Essay, International Rescue Committee)
Boston, MA | Summer-Fall 2005
Documented recently arrived Somalian refugees as they transitioned to a new life in Boston, MA.
Producer/Reporter, Woven Songs of the Amazon (Radio Story)
National Public Radio's Latino USA | February-March 2005
Radio story about an indigenous Shipibo shaman's efforts to preserve her village's culture in the face of encroaching outside influences.
Photographer, San Antonio Animal Control Facility (Photographic Essay, Texas Monthly Magazine)
San Antonio, TX | August 2004 + January 2005
Documented San Antonio's Animal Control Facility.
Photographer, "Woven Songs of the Amazon" (Green Spider Films)
San Francisco de Yarinacocha, Peru | June 2004
Photographed villagers and life in a remote, indigenous Shipibo village in the Peruvian Amazon basin.
Project Sponsorship: Blue Earth Alliance
Award: Photocrati Fund - Honorable Mention, La Carretera project
Exhibition: "The (In)Visible Project: A Human Portrait of San Diego's Homeless Population"; University of San Diego
Exhibition: "The (In)Visible Project: A Human Portrait of San Diego's Homeless Population", TEDx - San Diego Conference, ART SAN DIEGO Contemporary Art Fair
Exhibition: "Haiti: Koudeta Sa Pap Pase"; San Diego State University
Grant: Puffin Foundation (USA)
Grant: Society for Environmental Journalists (USA)
Grant: The Christensen Fund/Project Word (USA)
Exhibitions: “Children in Nature”; NASA Space Center, Houston; LBJ Library, University of Texas, Austin, Dell Children's Medical Center
- Award: National Magazine Awards (USA) - Finalist: Photojournalism
Exhibitions: “Agua, Rios, y Pueblos” | International traveling exhibition (Spain: Zaragoza, Malaga; Mexico: Mexico City, Temacapulín; USA: Berkeley)
Award: Austin Visual Arts Association (TX) - "Artist of the Year, Photography"
Exhibition: “Postcards from Invisible Cities: Photographs 2005-2009” | Solo Show - L.Nowlin Gallery, Austin TX
Exhibitions: “Agua, Rios, y Pueblos” | International traveling exhibition (Mexico: Mexico City; Spain: Aínsa, Huesca)
Book: “Agua, Rios, y Pueblos” (FNCA, Spain 2009)
Grant: Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting (USA)
Exhibitions: “Agua, Rios, y Pueblos” | Book, DVD, Educational Materials, and International traveling exhibition (Spain: World Expo Zaragoza 2008; Norway: Oslo)
- Collection: American Photography 24 | Chosen (Amilus, Inc., NY, NY)
Award: Magenta Foundation - Honorable Mention | Flash Forward: Emerging Photographers
Award: Santa Fe Center for Photography - Third Prize | Singular Image B&W
Award: Golden Light Awards - Honorable Mention | Travel Portfolio; Honorable
Mention, Single Image
- Exhibition: Texas Photographic Society - 21st Annual Members Juried Exhibition
- Publication: Shots - Featured in Documentary Issue (#92)
- Collection (Book): American Photography 21 | Selected (Amilus, Inc., NY, NY)
Award: Society of Publication Designers - Merit Award for Photography, "Inhumane Society", Texas Monthly, March 2005
- Exhibition: Texas Photographic Society - 20th Annual Members Competition
Speaker, "Media as a Humanitarian Voice"; WorldLink Annual Youth Meeting, University of San Diego | Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice
Guest Lecturer, Irvine Community College
Guest Lecturer, Art Center College of Design, Pasadena CA
Speaker, World Refugee Day, Museum of Photographic Art, San Diego CA
Speaker, "Haiti: Koudeta Sa Pap Pase"; Center for Latin American Studies, San Diego State University
Speaker, "Water, Rivers and People/Agua, Ríos y Pueblos - Images of the Global Effort to Defend Rivers and Human Rights"; David Brower Center, Berkeley CA
Instructor, Texas Folklife Resources "Deep in the Heart" workshops, Austin TX