Ian Sanderson was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1951. His father was a plumber and his mother was a bookkeeper. At eighteen years old, he left Glasgow to study Fine Art in the north of England at Sunderland University. He wanted to go on to do a Post Graduate course and was short listed for a place at the Slade School of Art in London. The problem was he was married with a three year old son so the costs involved in moving to London made it impossible.
For the first couple of years he worked in factories doing manual labor and in 1975 he found work as a silkscreen printer, specializing in printing on to glass. From 1978 until 1980 he worked as a photographer for the Newcastle Upon Tyne group of museums, working with the conservation department. This was very disciplined work which helped him develop his technical skills.
In 1980 he moved to Brighton on the south coast of England and did a one year post graduate in Art Education. After finishing the course he spent two years working part time as a teacher in a closed unit for young criminals and also a lecturer at Northbrook College teaching drawing and photography. He was given a full time post at Northbrook and remained there until 1990.
While working as a lecturer he also acquired work from publishers and magazines, this allowed him to leave his college position and work freelance. Unfortunately, this coincided with a serious financial crash in the UK, he lost most of his clients and his apartment. He took a chance and moved to rural France where accommodation was very cheap and proceeded to try and rebuild his career. In 1993, a well paid catalogue job allowed him to buy a computer along with a copy of ‘Photoshop' which looked to be the future of commercial photography, it took a while but working only with the manual he became very proficient with the application, by 1995 he was finding commercial work using the new technology.
All of this time, Ian has produced his personal work and has now a large archive going back over thirty five years. His commercial clients included General Motors, Subaru, Alfa Romeo, Coca Cola plus various corporate and financial organisations. In 2009, an assignment from the Financial Times in London to photograph the Jewellery designer and philanthropist, Elsa Peretti, resulted in a collaboration with her which continues to the present day.
Over the last several years, Ian has been reviving two 19th. century printing techniques, Platinum Palladium and Gum Bichromate. This culminated in a large retrospective exhibition in Barcelona which was sponsored by the 'Nando and Elsa Peretti Foundation’ The Platinum and Palladium prints are particularly interesting as he prints on to ‘vellum’ and bonds pure gold and silver to the back of the prints. At present, he is one of only a handful of artists worldwide producing this type of work.