Born in San Rafael, California, Dean Whitbeck trained as an educator before becoming a photographer in the early 2000’s. He earned an MAT in education from St. Mary’s College (CA) and his work at schools in New York and Oakland, CA and his desire to document the experiences of young people in educational settings sparked his interest in photography. By 2003, Whitbeck had produced his first extended documentary series of his career, EVIDENCE. Dean Whitbeck’s straightforward portraits often portray the honor and equity of individuals of all abilities living in varied cultural circumstances. Because he insists on presenting his pictures in series, rather than individually, and because the context of each works point of view is woven with the context of another works point of view, Whitbeck achieves a difficult task. His photographs work as tapestries that impart the dignity and integrity of his subjects without forcing their heroism or implicitly soliciting pity. Whitbeck's photography communicates a subtle understanding of social and cultural norms that bind humanity that are seldom available in other photographers' representations of similar themes.