Joseph Bounds has been devoted to art since he was a child. He has drawn since he could hold a pencil, and, he began painting with oils at the age of 8. Around the age of 13, he was drawn to the beauty, intellect, and emotional depth of the old masters such as Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, and Caravaggio. He began to study their works independently as a high-school student. He learned to look carefully and sensitively, to think in complex ways about the effects of light, and to consider the material qualities and array of potential processes afforded by oil paint. After graduating high-school, Joseph enrolled at the University of North Carolina Greensboro. However, he withdrew from the university to spend a year in solitude exploring the possibilities of painting without distractions from the outside world. After this year, he enrolled at Barton College for a year before transferring to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he completed his BFA in 2017. During his time at the Art Institute of Chicago, Joseph explored many new ways of painting and drawing, eventually preferring large scale paintings of the nude body.
Joseph held his first art show at the age of 17 at the Horace Williams House in Chapel Hill, NC. At the age of 18, his work was selected as a finalist (among the top 20 of approximately 20,000 entries) for inclusion in the annual Art Prize for Schools competition at the prestigious Saatchi Gallery in the UK. He has continued to pursue art, showing and selling work privately and in various venues in North Carolina and Chicago. He currently resides in North Carolina where he is working to contribute to the arts culture of his home state, making and showing art, and curating art shows with fellow artists. In the fall (2018), he will be teaching figure drawing classes for continuing education students at Barton College in Wilson, NC.