Specializing in Faith & Religion
Columbus, Ohio, USA

Portrait by Michael Bou-Nacklie

LAUREN POND is a documentary photographer who specializes in faith and religion. She is currently the multimedia content producer for the American Religious Sounds Project within The Ohio State University’s Center for the Study of Religion. She also works on freelance projects across the country. Lauren is the recipient of the 2016 Duke Center for Documentary Studies/Honickman First Book Prize in Photography for her photo story, Test of Faith, which will be published by Duke University Press/CDS in November of 2017.

In addition to documenting worship and ritual, Lauren explores how people’s beliefs intersect with their lives and cultures. She often immerses herself in communities over the course of several months or years, helping her understand different faiths more deeply and portray them in a nuanced manner. Ultimately, Lauren hopes to use her work to generate greater religious understanding, empathy, and tolerance. To complement her documentary photography, she spends much of her time outdoors, where she uses her camera to explore the uncanny, mysterious, and sometimes spiritual facets of the natural world.

Lauren received her Master of Arts degree in photojournalism from Ohio University’s School of Visual Communication in 2014. Her photographs have appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal, and have been recognized by the Magnum/Inge Morath Foundations, the Lucie Foundation, FotoVisura, PDN, College Photographer of the Year, and the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, among others. She has spoken about her work at universities and conferences across the United States.

Lauren also believes in the importance of empowering communities to share their own stories. She has worked with refugees in the arts, and she is the manager of the Fresh A.I.R. Gallery in downtown Columbus, which exhibits the work of artists who have been affected by mental illness and substance use disorders.

 Download Lauren's CV (384.24 KB)


  • AARP
  • Associated Press
  • Binghamton University
  • The Charlotte Observer
  • Embassy of Iceland
  • The Humane Society
  • Northwestern University
  • The Ohio State University
  • Ohio University
  • Pearson Education
  • Religion News Service
  • Rodale
  • Tanenbaum Center
  • The Wall Street Journal
  • The Washington Post
  • Yale University