Arden Barnes is a freelance photographer based in Kentucky. 

Her work has taken her from covering climate disasters, agriculture and daily life throughout Kentucky to southern Oregon where she covered multi-layered water and climate issues. She enjoys hiking, spending time with her two cats, creating images with her grandfather’s old film camera and considers herself a very proud Kentuckian.

Phone: (859) 608-9015 


Photo by Jack Gruber 

Select Clients + Publications

The Washington Post, NPR, The New York Times, Sports Illustrated, Southern Cultures Magazine, Keeneland Magazine, PostIndustrial Magazine, Kentucky Lantern, The Lexington Herald-Leader

Experience, Internships + Fellowships

Freelance Photographer | May 2018 - Present

Staff Photographer, University of Kentucky | April 2022 - January 2023

Staff Photographer through Report for America, Herald and News, Klamath Falls, Oregon | June 2021 - March 2022 

Intern, The Sacramento Bee, Sacramento, California | Summer 2019

Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling, Boyd’s Station, Harrison County, Kentucky | Summer 2018

Education and Workshops

2023 | MA in Arts Administration, University of Kentucky 

2023 | Graduate Certificate in Fundraising and Development, University of Kentucky

2020 | BA in Journalism, University of Kentucky 

2019 | Eddie Adams Workshop, Jeffersonville, New York 

2019 | Mountain Workshop - Videography, Cynthiana, Kentucky

2018 | Sam Abell Workshop, Lexington, Kentucky, University of Kentucky 

2018| Mountain Workshop - Photography, Mt. Sterling, Kentucky, Western Kentucky University


2024 | In the Company of Creatives, University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies, Lexington, Kentucky

2023 |  Saunterings, Christ Church Cathedral, Lexington, Kentucky

2022 | Spring Artist Guild Showcase, Boyd’s Station Art Gallery, Cynthiana, Kentucky

2021 | AMERICA REIMAGINED, Kennedy Heights Arts Center, Cincinnati, Ohio

2019 | Witness: Beauty in the Truth, Ki Smith Gallery, New York, New York

2017 | Foundations Art Exhibit, Bolivar Art Gallery, Lexington, Kentucky

Select Awards

2021 | First Place Photo Essay, Society of Professional Journalists - Pacific Northwest 

2020 | Student Photographer of the Year runner-up, Kentucky News Photographers Association 

2020 | First Place Multimedia Story of the Year, Associated Collegiate Press

2020 | First Place Multimedia - Video, Kentucky News Photographers Association

2020 | Award of Excellence: Sports Feature, College Photographer of the Year

2019 | First Place Best Photo Package, College Media Association 

2019 | First Place General News Photo, Kentucky News Photographers Association

2019 | Bronze: General News, College Photographer of the Year

2019 | Student Photographer of the Year runner-up, Kentucky News Photographers Association

2018 | Student Clip Contest Photographer of the Year runner-up, National Press Photographers Association

2018 | General News Photo of the Year Finalist, Associated Collegiate Press (2018)

2017 | Foundations Exhibit Merit Award, Bolivar Art Gallery

Using Format