Jacob Maentz (b. 1979) is an American travel and documentary photographer currently based in Cebu City, Philippines. His passion lies in creating images that communicate a strong sense of place and cultural awareness in unique, challenging situations. His photographs ofen refect his background in conservation and explore issues related to the human condition and natural world.
Jacob is currently working on a long term project (Project Katutubong Pilipino), creating compelling and comprehensive photo documentaries about the diferent indigenous groups throughout the Philippine archipelago. Afer running a successful Kickstarter campaign, the project has progressed to cover many regions of the country. In 2014, Jacob held a solo exhibition at the Water Dragon Gallery in Makati City, Manila. Tis exhibit, in collaboration with Asia Society Philippines, showcased his work from the frst two years of Project Katutubong Pilipino.
Jacob is a contributing photographer at Getty Images, one of the leading digital media providers for advertisers, publishers, brands, and other media producers. His images have been published world-wide including; Discovery Channel Magazine, National Geographic Traveler Magazine, Asian Geographic, Condé Nast, Lonely Planet, Te Telegraph, and Te Guardian. He has been commissioned by Fortune 500 companies, private organizations, Non-Government Organizations, book publishers and universities and when time permits he writes photography tutorials for diferent online outlets and conducts group photography workshops.
In 2013, Jacob was awarded the Grand Prize for PhotoShelter’s Jumpstart your Photography Business initiative and was shortlisted for the American Photographic Artists (APA) / Lucie Foundation Scholarship for his work with Filipino indigenous groups. Jacob was awarded as the Second Place Finalist in the prestigious 2014/2015 Photocrati Fund (now Imagely Fund) and became a fnalist in the 2016 Travel Photographer of the Year (TPOTY) awards.
Jacob graduated with honors (Magna Cum Laude) with a B.S. in Wildlife Biology and Interdisciplinary Study in Conservation Biology from Colorado State University, USA 1998-2002. In 2003, he joined the United States Peace Corps where he worked on the island of Palawan, Philippines, developing environmental education programs using photography and collecting biological data for the island’s Environmentally Critical Areas Network (ECAN) zoning. After his time as a Peace Corps volunteer, Jacob worked with the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration in Hawaii and Alaska collecting biological data aboard commercial fishing vessels. Jacob has been residing in Cebu City, Philippines with his family since 2007 where he works full-time as a professional freelance photographer.