Jabez Hogg was born in Chatham, the youngest son of John Hogg and his wife, Martha. He attended Rochester Grammar School and pursued his interests in literature and photography. In 1843 Hogg began working as a writer and editor for the newly established "Illustrated London News". Two years later, he took up the study of medicine at London's Hunterian School of Medicine, and that same year published "A Practical Manual of Photography". Hogg practised medicine, specializing in ophthalmology, dentistry, and diseases of the skin, until at least 1891, donated several daguerreotype portraits to the Royal College of Surgeons, whose ranks he had joined in 1850.