Introduction: Karl graduated from Illinois Benedictine College in 1983 with a degree in Physical Education then attended San Diego  State University for post graduate study in Kinesiology and Biomechanics. In 1986 Karl was hired by Lederle Pharmaceuticals and thus began a 15 year career in medical sales and medical sales management. In addition to Lederle, Karl worked for Johnson & Johnson Orthopaedics and Aircast Inc. In the late 90’s while still working as a regional sales manager with Aircast, Karl began honing his photography skills by shooting for newspapers and photographing weddings on weekends. During this time he also developed a business plan and an “exit strategy from his real job”, to follow his dream of becoming an international photojournalist. “Photography was always my passion and I had spent every vacation, traveling throughout the developing world, photographing indigenous cultures it was time to make the big move and go for it”. Karl’s plan began to take shape when in 2001 after nurturing a relationship with Health Volunteers Overseas (a medical NGO) Karl found corporate funding and embarked on a year long volunteer photo assignment documenting HVO’s programs world wide. With the resulting portfolio of images to prove his ability, in 2001 Karl began slowly building a clientele of NGOs  photographing relief efforts in Asia, Africa and South America. To date, Karl has worked for more than 85 NGOs in more than 50 countries.



Straight Photojournalism and Photojournalism for Aid Organizations

(Claire Thomas, the best advice I ever received)

Dengue Fever Outbreak Cambodia



Cholera Outbreak Haiti

Kumbh Mela



Kumbh Mela Sadhus



Yangon Ring Train:


Choosing between color photography and black and white:

Images that stick in your head:

The difference between straight photojournalism and those images which are posed on my photo tours

Capturing the decisive moment: anticipation and preparation


Technical issues: Camera gear, new, old, expensive or cheap.


So you might ask: What is my favorite image?

Epiphany in Sudan….






Wrap up: Freedom From Hunger Empowered Women

Freedom From Hunger Tribute from Karl Grobl on Vimeo.




 Further reading: 10Q Karl interviewed by Heber Vega 








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