George Seeley was a student of painting and drawing in Boston when he met Fred Holland Day, who introduced him to the pictorial possibilities of photography. His debut came in 1904, when Seeley exhibited fourteen photographs in the First American Photographic Salon in New York. A reviewer enthused: "Mr. Seeley is the new man for whom we are always on the lookout, and his advent among pictorialists will be the sensation of the year." The statement proved true. Critical of the exhibition but supportive of Seeley's work, Alfred Stieglitz invited Seeley to join the Photo-Secession, with which he remained for six years, exhibiting and publishing his photographs.
After the break with Stieglitz's group, declining interest in the Pictorialist aesthetic and the increasing unavailability of platinum paper after World War I contributed to the demise of Seeley's photographic career. He continued to exhibit his work into the 1930s, although he had practically ceased to make new work. An amateur ornithologist who was active in his church, Seeley took up oil painting in his later years and was a correspondent for the local Stockbridge, Massachusetts, newspaper.