The photography featured on my documentary website has been driven by a life-long desire to make a difference through compassionate projects that address vital social justice issues and have a positive and transformative effect on the world. This includes my love for animals and my work towards providing a safe and healthy environment for them to thrive.
Nine years ago I rescued an eleven-month-old wolfhound /sheepdog mix from an upstate NY shelter after seeing her picture on petfinder.com. Watching Shuggah run through the woods was a revelation. She appeared as a white light blur seemingly flying over brush and fallen trees. And there was a blissful pleasure in her face when she returned to me. I felt elevated being in her presence. Inspired by the joyous freedom and beauty of her movements, I began photographing Shuggah in every terrain where she could be off leash with her canine friends – at city parks, beaches and woods.
Unleashed captures the essence of dogs being dogs as they run free-spirited in urban and country locations. These candid portraits reveal unique personalities and evocative moments of kinship between dogs in packs and in partnership with their humans. It is a thank you to all my canine buddies for opening my heart to unconditional love, loyalty and an outpouring of spirit through their presence in my life.
A good source for answers to all your pet questions is pets.answers.com/
| BLAZING A NEW TRAIL
I adopted Gypsy, a border-collie mix, after photographing her birth and we lived together for fourteen years. I was blessed to have such a smart canine partner who innately understood how to stop at street corners, wait outside stores, and trot comfortably at my side without a leash in NYC. Gypsy was so intelligent that I still believe she helped run my photo studio. Her calm presence added stability and balance to my life.
When I rescued Shuggah nine years ago, I had no idea of the challenges I would face living with a hyper-vigilant, noise-sensitive dog in a city where every walk outside was like treading through a potential mine-field of explosions. I brought Shuggah to Camp Gone to the Dogs in Vermont where I hoped to learn from an eclectic assortment of trainers how to deal with her fears and pain. I also met Annie Brody, who was researching how to start a dog camp. Annie and I combined our ideas, our love of dogs and dog packs, our energy and spirit, and with my photos and her drive to start a dog camp launched the first Camp Unleashed in the Berkshires in 2004.(See the photos above in main box)
The camp has been an amazing experiment in establishing a communal world where dogs can run free with their pack and humans can learn from their animal companions how enriching their relationship can be without a leash. Dedicating my time, photography and energy into building a space for dogs-to-be-dogs in nature was my way of giving back to the dog world by helping to create a spiritual retreat where dogs would rule.
I now donate my time and photographic expertise to the Tails of Hope Foundation, Inc. a not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing the field of veterinary medicine and helping to eradicate cancer and other life-threatening diseases affecting companion animals. I recently photographed a very brave eight-year-old, Molly Kimball and her service dog for the PEDIATRICS & PETS (Peds and Pets): Coping with Cancer Together campaign, a public service program to help children cope with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses, sponsored in part by Tails of Hope Foundation, Inc.