Christopher Rolinson discovered his passion for photography in 1996 at Slippery Rock University after a tour of duty in the US Army. At Slippery Rock University, Rolinson, guided by his mentors he merged fine art photography with communication and politics. He discovered the interconnected nature of the media and government by experimenting with situations designed to create images across mass media.
Upon graduation in 2000, Rolinson practiced photojournalism at the Steubenville, Ohio Herald-Star. There Rolinson documented day-to-day life in the sometimes gritty communities situated along the Upper Ohio River Valley.
In 2001 Rolinson documented the war ravaged Former Yugoslav Republic of Kosovo. The subsequent work was published in the Herald-Star. This endeavor emboldened Rolinson’s passion for the history of conflict, culture and conquest in Eastern Europe. He has since returned to the region two more times to document and understand the diverse cultures of the Slovak Republic.
In 2004 Rolinson began the ambitious project of documenting Pennsylvania’s state parks and wild places. He challenged the stereotype that Pennsylvania was a rusting industrial region, but do to its geography contains numerous wild places. It was his quest to increase awareness and participation in the appreciation and preservation of Pennsylvania’s remaining wildernesses. The compilation, Our State Parks, was published in 2009. Since 2008 the collective works have existed as a traveling exhibition that continue to be shown in numerous venues throughout western Pennsylvania.
In 2005, Rolinson was a U.S. National Parks Service Artist-in-Residence at Amistad National Recreation Area in Del Rio, Texas. There, he documented the hard-scrabbled landscapes and culture of the desert border region. Also, while in residence he created a youth photography program which provided cameras to local children as a way to record the beautiful, personal and ironic images of where they live. His most recent expedition was an exploration of Alaska’s interior region.
Rolinson began experimenting with Gigapan imaging in 2008. He is researching and experimenting with methods to further develop functional non-linear interactive documentary and photojournalistic gigapixel photographs. With his research he hopes to prove that gigapixel images offer potential for increased interactivity between the viewer and the story. He is currently a contributing editor to Gigapan Magazine.
Rolinson attended graduate school at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Pa. While an adjunct he spear-headed significant changes in the photography and photojournalism programs. He grew the programs from their infancy to well over 100 students. Rolinson continues to serve on the faculty at Point Park. In 2010, he coordinated major realignments in curriculum to reflect the ever-evolving media and photography landscape. As well, he plays and active role in the visual and multimedia marketing for the university.
His current personal projects include: