Born in British Columbia in 1970, Christopher Anderson spent much of his early years in Texas, where his father was a preacher, before moving to New York City and then Paris.
His life in photography began in the photo lab of the Dallas Morning News, where he learned to develop film and print pictures. In 1993, he was hired as a staff photographer for a small Colorado newspaper. Never comfortable with the idea of working as an employee, he left the newspaper in 1995 and began doing freelance assignments.
Initially working in color, Anderson began photographing a wide range of subjects for magazines. In 1996, he became a contract photographer for U.S. News & World Report, where he began documenting social issues such as the effects of Russia's economic crisis, the situation of Afghan refugees in Pakistan and the election of Evo Morales in Bolivia. In 1999, Anderson covered Haitian immigrants trying to sail to the United States, a project that changed his work to focus on what he often thought of as experiential journalism.
Working now in black and white, Anderson was honored with the Robert Capa Gold Medal Award. Later that year, he photographed the stone throwers of Gaza and was named Kodak's Young Photographer of the Year. In 2003, he published his first monograph, Nonfiction.
He joined the VII Agency in 2002 and became a Magnum Photos nominee in 2005. He is based in New York.