So it has been a rather long time since I published a blog post; I keep my Facebook page updated, post pretty kitty photos on Instagram, and also post on Twitter, but I’ve been a bit naughty with my blog lately. Personal reasons have kept me from doing so. *That is a good opening reminder to everyone to go and follow me in all those places though, isn’t?!
I want to share a few great photo sessions that I haven’t managed to show people yet…
First of all, I can’t believe it’s the end of summer time; my cats hunt down the remaining sun patches on the floor during the daytime hours, and had sadly been spending less time sleeping on my bed at night because it was too warm to be near at night.
And my old pup Apollo was walking around with his mouth open panting, or lying asleep most of the day, exhausted by the heat, even if he hadn’t done a thing (he is 13, so that’s okay, I guess). He does like lying in sun patches too, even though he has black fur (going grey), but like me, has less tolerance for the heat these days than he used to. Luckily this is Seattle, you say. We had MONTHS of the hottest summer days I can remember here; we only JUST had our first 2 days of rain that I can recall in the longest time. Fall this year is welcome relief for Seattlites, especially after all the smokey skies from the wild fires. My pets can come back and lie on the bed!!
But I wasn’t going to write an entire post about my dear Apollo and my cats Hailey and Jeffers (one day you’ll get your star blog post, guys, I promise). Most people land on my page, or know my photography, because of my volunteer rescue ‘work’. I hate to call it work because, while I know that it takes a bunch of time and effort, ie photography, editing, etc, and that I’ve done photos for the same cat rescue for 6 years now, it rewards me personally so much. But that’s a whole different post.
That said, I want to remind people I do private photography sessions: some people are actually surprised to hear this. I guess I’m not the marketing superstar I wish I could be, and I have not been great at tooting my horn and telling people that I do more than the rescue photography. That’s my quiet admission to you all today! I’d love to take more photos of people’s pets, and people with their pets, and pets with their people (I also do documentary, events, and families too). I’ve photographed some wonderful cat and dog (and chicken) families, and I want to share some of my favorite images with you.
‘SHIRLEY & ANDY’
‘EMMA, FRIDA, TYSON, ASHTON, & BABY’
‘SEPHY, APOLLO, ATHENA, EBONY & 4 CHICKENS (INCLUDING BLACK WIDOW)’
Never wait too long before you get photos with your pets and of your pets! One of the reasons I really want to urge people to get some great images of their pets done by a professional photographer, is because I never want to hear from someone again, “I wish I’d had my pet’s photos taken before they died”…which is the saddest thing in the world for me to hear. Information about session rates, can be found HERE, and please talk with me a little bit more if you have a pet on ‘borrowed time’ and you’d like some special photos done. Email me for more info.
I’ll be doing a kitty photo session at someone’s home this week, and it’s also the rescue’s annual Nine Lives Gala this weekend, where I’ll be taking probably about a thousand photos as always. This year’s theme is ‘Caturday Night Fever’ so that’s going to be totally groovy. I’m looking forward to getting everyone’s photo at the ‘photobooth’ and to see who bids on having their cat on the cover of next year’s rescue calendar. I’ll be working on that soon.
I hope to hear from you soon! CONNECT WITH ME!
**This post is dedicated to the beautiful Baby, the smaller tabby cat in the second slideshow. She latched on to me immediately when I was taking photos at her mama’s house, and she passed away recently, Rest in peace, sweet kitty.
*2nd dedication to the beautiful chicken Black Widow!
UPDATE: SECOND BATCH IS SOLD OUT. If you would like to order a calendar, contact me directly by emailing me! firstname.lastname@example.org
Hello lovelies! Good MEWS – a second CALENDAR SALE!
Thanks to everyone’s super (fast) enthusiasm, the first batch of 2017 Seattle Area Feline Rescue Calendars sold out within a WEEK (I knew they would!!), and we need to order again, so we are having another FLASH PRE-ORDER SALE! If you missed out last time, you MUST ORDER this time round!
The pre-order deadline is this Friday 12/30/16, and then there will be a small amount available at the rescue, here in Seattle, when they arrive.
Calendars are $19.99 in-person and for rescue pick-up ($24.99 if you would like it mailed to you). This is a fabulous 11 x 14 smooth card stock, wire-bound calendar, featuring my photography, and I included some fun holidays on it, and there’s still lots of room to write! And best of all, you are helping rescue kitties and you get to look at these beautiful #cats all year long! I’m so proud of this lovely calendar, and I hope you love it.
Make sure to order right away because it will be a limited supply again. I’m so excited we are ordering more so more people can get one!! Thank you for your support!
*Update: Please email me to order now as they have sold out at the rescue! Thank you for all the orders and all the support!
Here is the direct order link https://secure.lglforms.com/form_engine/s/upMd6PjrRJv5-ygWKY1m4Q
I did a bit of a goof and left this post in my drafts, even though these images of mine make my heart sing. I’ve photographed a couple of these amazing Wings of Rescue missions before, but hadn’t for a while, so it was high time I documented another flight coming in.
The rescue I photograph for, Seattle Area Feline Rescue (SAFeR), is now regularly receiving rescue transports from California and Hawaii, thanks to Wings of Rescue AND the ASPCA (via our friends Alaskan Airlines), and I can’t explain how blown away I am by the power of this community rescue work. The math is pretty simple: we have higher adoption rates here in the Greater Seattle Area, than in CA, Hawaii, and in Eastern WA, where we usually get our cats from. Many times, these animals will have been waiting for a while in shelters where they came from, but will get adopted in a fraction of that time on this end.
Love is in the air…and on the ground, waiting for them, every time. There are also smiles all around when that plane touches down; with this flight, I was able to meet the Founder and Pilot in Command, Yehunda Netanel, as he was flying the flagship plane that day. And that little plane holds a lot of crates!!
EVERY time I document any rescue transport coming in, and I photograph these little animal faces peering out, with them not knowing what’s going on, I see this contrast of their anxiety with the smiles of the volunteers, and I wish I could assure them that their second chances had already arrived and it would be okay. The whole experience really warms my soul.
Let me know what you think when you see these images, and about these missions! I’d love to hear from you!
**And remember to check in with me on Facebook; I’m always there!
I recently had the great privilege of photographing a good friend’s family and her dog that was dying of a fatal heart cancer. We knew that Phoenix, who she had since he was a puppy, had only a few weeks left to live, even though outwardly he seemed pretty vibrant and energetic when I saw him for our photos. We didn’t have a long time to do photos that day, and we knew we wanted to get a good family picture, and undoubtedly some photos of Phoenix with their (now) 3 year-old. She hadn’t quite grasped that Phoenix would be ‘leaving’ soon…
There was still craziness getting the two dogs to sit side by side (although so much better than my dog ever could), and we talked a lot. I love hearing about how an animal came to be in someone’s life; everything about an animal is about the present, it’s not about the past or the future. Phoenix wasn’t worried about what was happening to him. He kept us right there with him. After the session, Phoenix was with them another 18 days, and so when I look at these images I know that I’m looking at a family and a beautiful animal and friend at a precious moment in time, and I’m so glad I was there. Time is so fleeting. It’s a bittersweet thing to take final photos like this but there’s great joy here. It’s celebrating the connection, the family, and how important that life is. Phoenix was important.
So there may be a few people out there who don’t understand the bonds that some of us have with our pets, our companion animals. I like to think they may just not have found the right animal buddy yet. Some might make you feel silly for making such a fuss over your pet and don’t understand the grief you can feel at the loss of a beloved animal friend. I believe life is precious, and most definitely the life of an animal that has loved you unconditionally and always been by your side. And we all know that our animal friends never live as long as we wish they could…it can be really hard to say goodbye.
I know what it’s like to lose a pet (well, several), one that’s been in my life through thick and thin, not judging, always comforting. Words can’t always easily express that bond. Our companions leave us way too early and more often than not, we don’t capture the unique bond we have with our dog or cat on camera. Sure, maybe there are a bunch of not-too-awesome cell phone pictures, but maybe not some professional images. I even wish I had better and more pictures of several pets I have lost in my past, especially with me in them too.
So why do I want photograph your pets in their last days? And why should it be me?
I don’t want other people to let days with their pets slip by, especially the last ones. Too many people lose their pets and tell me they wish they had got professional photos done with them. They tell me they wish I had taken the photos; I wish I had too. I know we can’t always anticipate an animals’ passing, but we do know when they are living on borrowed time, when they’re old, getting grey whiskers around their noses, and when they’re ill. We don’t always want to face it either. Having worked in veterinary clinics (and in rescue work) I have helped treat and been around many frail, old and sick animals that need extra special care. I want you to know this because I do understand the delicate nature of photographing a sick or aged kitty or pup; I also know what you go through getting closer to their passing, and eventually, saying goodbye. I’ve also been there for many people as they’ve said their final farewells with their precious companions in their arms. You can put your trust in me when it comes to recording and honoring an important and sensitive time.
Some people are hesitant to get ‘last’ photos taken, since their pets may not look as they always have, not looking as healthy or as young as they once did. I think that all their life stages deserve to be remembered and I still hope to capture the spirit of that animal in the most honest and beautiful way. The feeling of regret over not getting images taken is not something I want other loving pet guardians to feel anymore!
I believe that our animals’ spirits stay with us when their bodies are gone, and this is something that comforts me. Their souls are so innocent, pure and loving, and we are so lucky we can have that in our lives. So many animals are never given the chance to be loved and then honored in this way, with a portrait and some images of their life, just to show how meaningful they were to someone. I hope I get to meet your beloved friend and companion, and that I can be entrusted with commemorating any of their days. Let’s celebrate the life that they have lived! The life they lived was important.
You can leave me any comments on this subject on this page, but you can also contact me with any questions about booking such a session over on this page here.
The problem with living is that pets don’t last long enough and people last too long.” ~ Anonymous
RIP Phoenix 10/19/2003 – 11/24/2015