I Took Pictures Of Adorable Dogs And Cats At Animal Shelters And Rescues In The United States (17 Pics)
In honor of Betty White’s decades of dedication to animal shelters, I launched a collection of my 17 fine art portraits of dogs and cats, all taken at animal shelters and rescues in the United States. The images were created with a portable studio and painstakingly processed to show these unfortunate, but beautiful, animals in their very best light. Fifty percent of the proceeds and royalties are donated to animal shelters.
My image of “Duke”, entitled “Say What?” was a Grand Imaging Awards Top-Ten Nominee in the International Photographic Competition through the Professional Photographers of America (PPA). Seven of my other NFTs have won awards at IPC, and one was awarded Best of Show at a PPA-affiliate guild competition.
For those of you wondering what an “NFT” is, it’s the acronym for a “Non-fungible Token.” An NFT is something like the “deed” to a property or a “certificate of authenticity,” but lives forever on a blockchain and can never be changed. The opposite of something like gold, where every bar of bullion is exactly the same (interchangeable), most NFTs are completely unique.
NFTs have exploded in popularity in the past year and are being “minted” (created) on many different platforms like OpenSea, Foundation, Rarible, SuperRare, and many, many more. All kinds of digital art are being bought, sold, and displayed in the “Metaverse”.
The Rescue Pets NFTs retain the names given to each animal by their respective shelter. Each NFT is accompanied by a physical print up to 30 inches if the collector desires.
Even if you cannot collect an NFT at this time, please consider donating to your local animal shelter for the #BettyWhiteChallenge.
Great images really do get animals out of shelters. I was once grocery shopping when a young woman in scrubs marched straight up to me, gushing about how my images were getting animals adopted. At first, I had no idea who she was, but she worked at the city shelter I was working with at the time. I have literally heard volunteers say that great pictures don’t help, but trust me, they absolutely do. I’ve seen it firsthand. For more information, please look up Heart Speak, a global network of shelter photographers.
I earned a PhD in Engineering Physics where much of my work had to do with imaging, albeit on a much, much smaller scale. I also practiced painting early in life, so I guess I’ve always been drawn to images of animals. Photography was just faster than painting. I really got going in my pet photography when my husband bought me a film camera on eBay to keep me busy when I accompanied him to train our dogs on weekends. Then I was invited to take the portraits at a national field trial and the rest, as they say, is history.
Reece - A Whirling Dervish
I’m passionate about photography because it provides a way to capture one’s unique perspective on the world and preserve moments and memories that easily get lost in time. I’m also passionate about the ability of great photographs to get animals out of shelters. I’ll never forget the day in the grocery store when a shelter worker marched up to me and started gushing about how my images were getting animals adopted.
The most challenging part of photographing animals is patience. Patience with the animals, but more often patience with the owners and their expectations of their pets. Animals are extremely sensitive to how their owners are feeling and it absolutely affects the outcome of the session.
I have an upcoming project! I’m working with the Tails of the World Collective to raise funds for a local shelter this year. I participated last year as well. You can find out more about the project here. I have been remiss about submitting my info. to Caitlin, so I’m not listed yet on this year’s Find A Photographer page. I’ll be fixing that oversight shortly.