Joseph D.R. OLeary was born and raised in Green Bay, Wisconsin. In 1992, immediately after receiving his BFA in Graphic Design at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, OLeary opened Veto Design, a small, yet prolific design studio. Veto Design clients include a variety of cultural, arts, and educational organizations and institutions, including the Walker Art Center, the San Francisco Symphony, Northern Clay Center and Highpoint Center for Printmaking. For more than 20 years OLeary has been designing artist’s catalogs and books, and directing photoshoots for a variety of clients and organizations. His days — and years — are filled with creating design for aesthetically savvy clients.
When OLeary moved to a hobby farm just outside Minneapolis 9 years ago, it was no surprise he would decide to restore and convert the farm granary into a studio, where he does art/portrait and self-portrait photography, both of which feed his many appetites as an artist.
His photographic work has been included in exhibitions throughout the United States and beyond including: Minnesota, Florida, New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia, Colorado, The Netherlands, and Spain and was published twice in the London-based magazine “Mascular” featuring his self-portraits from the “Delicate Scars” and "Emerge" series.
His most recent project, entitled “Of Beards and Men,” has recently been published as a 212-page limited edition monograph which includes 150 portraits and three essays written by Douglas Beasley (photographer and educator), George Slade (photography historian, writer, consultant, and curator / re:photographica), and Andy Sturdevant (arts writer). In addition the book includes an interview by Beardreverd and brief statement by New York Times photography critic Vicki Goldberg.