Aryan Chappell Biography

Aryan Chappell





Photographer Aryan Chappell was born to photographer Walter Chappell and Nancy Barrett Dickinson in Big Sur, California in 1964. Chappell spent much of his childhood between Northern California and Taos, New Mexico where his parents had homes and studios.  


In 1984 he moved to Sonoma County, California, taking courses at Santa Rosa Junior College in photography from John Le Baron. There, he was an exhibitor in the group show, "50 Years of Sonoma County Photography" in 1986. In 1987 he held his first major solo show, "The Salt Point Portfolio", at the Bodega Landmark Gallery in the town of Bodega, California. Chappell was awarded the Kelly Scholarship for Art from the Junior College in 1989; he then began his studies at Sonoma State University.


Upon receiving his B.A. in art in 1992, Chappell worked and exhibited regularly throughout the North Bay, including shows at the Student Union Art Gallery at Sonoma State, and the California Museum of Art in Santa Rosa, CA. In 1994 he accepted a position as an Advisory Board Member for the ROP Photography Program at Ukiah High School in Ukiah, CA, which he kept until 2004.


His work, greatly influenced by the style of his photographer father, who introduced him to the artform, primarily focused on nature and landscapes. He often took long sojourns to rural areas in California, Colorado, Hawaii, and New Mexico to focus on the flora of his surrounds. In 2013 he traveled to Italy where he created an extensive portfolio of works centered around the Tuscany countryside and well as major cities such as Rome and Florence.


In 2000, after the death of his father, he became the documenter of the Walter Chappell estate, eventually becoming the director of the Walter Chappell Archive and trust. In 2011, he founded the Aryan Chappell Studio of photographic arts.


Chappell continues to exhibit today.