I am trying my hand at a genre, which is new, but not at all foreign to me. From now on, I will not only use my photos to channel my thoughts to you, but also my words.
The topic most worth exploring in my first blog post is adopting from a shelter. We have been proud shelter dog owners for two years. Our very-much mixed breed, Dió, has made our days more structured, has made me become more open to others, and has been a therapeutic helper while I battled and finally beat panic disorder. I could go on for pages, but the point is we changed each other’s lives for the better, and she does not lag her purebred counterparts, just the opposite. Let me show you my favourite pic out of the thousand:
With Dió came my interest in shelters. At first, we supported the different animal shelters with gifts, and, naturally, I have been urging my friends to adopt. After a while, I wanted to do more. The solution has been right in front of me, literally in my hands. I am a photographer, I believe in the power of photos, often it only takes one photo.
I could hardly wait to capture the soul and the love inside the dogs, but I couldn’t find the right concept. Suddenly, one wonderful dawn it suddenly struck me. These dogs have been waiting for ages to find their new homes, so using a suitcase would be a perfect idea. They have had enough of this way of life. Though they appreciate the hospitality, they have packed their cases and are ready to leave. I threw myself into the thrilling world of flea markets. Meanwhile, I realized that puppies and smaller dogs find new owners more easily. I was much more inspired by the older, bigger lovebugs, who have been living in shelters for a long time and who we tend to overlook when browsing through the kennels.
I partnered up with the Animal Shelter in Budaörs to carry out this project, who have given me all the help from brainstorming to the actual realization. I was a bit scared, a lot as I’ve had big plans for this project. I want these 20 dogs to find their owners, and the public to know more about the exemplary work of the shelter and its inhabitants. Márti and Beni (volunteers), who I only call dog whisperers, did everything they could to help take a successful photo – of course, we always kept in mind that the dogs are not forced to do anything. We arrived equipped with a few kilograms of treats and liver paste, and stood holding our breaths, waiting for the next dog in line. Something I could not prepare for was their reaction to our movements, pace, the volume of our voices or our proximity, but we adjusted quickly. It was heart-breaking to see some dogs’ fear and distrust towards people, which is a result of human brutality. I was also moved by the hope in their eyes, as they relaxed in a matter of minutes and became once again playful and carefree dogs.
There were plenty of funny moments: Viola could not stop for a second, as she wanted to be everywhere; Huba was tasting the liver paste from the tube; and Kenya wanted to have her backside photographed. Not to mention the ever-present smell of pee and poo, as we were very visibly marked by the two dozen dogs. ☺ I fell in love with them all, and, in addition, this morning produced a great series of photos. I hope my next post will feature the dogs with their newly-found owners.
You can check out the complete series at BB’z Bar on July 6th, from 6 pm. The opening will double as a fund raiser for the Animal Shelter in Budaörs. Follow the event on Facebook, we will share a lot of exciting stuff with you!
And most importantly: Take these wonderful creatures, don’t buy them!