'Twas a big day yesterday.
I had the privilege to be a pinch hitter for my sister Jill -- who's a very talented photog up in Tofino, BC -- and help out with a palliative session for her friend. One of her two beautiful rescue doggos isn't well and has been going through tests and treatments at a local vet clinic, but there's not much more medicine can do so it's now about enjoying what's left.
Of course I accepted... how could I not?
It was very last minute, but that's how these are sometimes. So much unknown can make planning hard, but when it needs to work out, it does. We met at a local beach, but with strong winds and pouring rain, it just wasn't going to work. So we took a little drive to find some shelter and hoped that the weather would give us a break... and it did. Two dogs, two humans and one photog (me) found a window of space and time amidst a rain and windstorm where sun shone through the trees onto a magical rock covered with moss under trees covered with lichen.
Thank you L, P, K + J.
UPDATE: December 14/21: I just found out lovely, little Lily passed away. Much love to her humans for rescuing her and giving her a life of unconditional love.
A few hours later I was off to photograph 3 dogs. These would be former sled dogs coming into care of a local rescue. Three more dogs who were now going to be covered until animal protection laws. Bamboo, Meso and Saturn are #s 206, 207 + 208 in my decade-long project advocating for the adoption of former sled dogs. But numbers aside, they were beautiful beings, understandably nervous of all the newness in one day, but whose lives are going to change for the better with the love, care and support of a huge community.
I'm no stranger to photographing dogs who aren't feeling well - both mentally and physically. I think most of my work follows that commonality. I try to branch out, but I'm always drawn back to them. "Them" being those who've been discarded, left behind... utterly in need of help. And this year, well I just realized that the bookends of my work this year have been palliative pup sessions - as well as one in the middle too. So when I think back over the year, along with the last 10+ too, it becomes more clear, that this is me. My place. I want to be that person who can be there with a camera, capturing moments that may be otherwise unseen. Being a part of that sadness while being able to see some joy in the memories that are created. To take that pause and hold that space in time. It may take a bit to understand it all, but having lost one of our dogs this summer - not unexpected, but more quickly than expected - I wished I'd had someone there near the end, capturing our little Bella Boo surrounded by us and our love for her.
I bought a new camera last week, then returned it the next day because the lens stopped working.
It was smaller and lighter and meant to be easier on my body - the days of lugging heavy cameras and lenses around are numbered for me sadly.
Long story short, I decided not to get a replacement, but now I'm second guessing that decision. It ticked a lot of boxes on my wishlist, but it's kind of taking a step backwards in the gear world in some respects. And I didn't fall in love with it when I took that first image like I've done when pressing that shutter release for the first time on my other cameras.
As well as the camera tech stuff I take into account when photographing, there's also a connected feeling I get. It may be a wee bit different, depending on which camera I use, but it's always there, no matter what camera I'm using. I didn't feel it during that short visit and I questioned if it will ever come?
I know photography isn't just about the camera -- there's knowledge of the gear, the gear itself (camera bodies, lenses, filters), the human behind the lens, their unique perspective to their subject, post processing, etc. - reminding me of a story:
"a photographer goes to a friend's house for dinner and the host says 'you're a wonderful photographer, you must have a fantastic camera!'. At the end of the meal, the photographer says to the host 'what a wonderful meal, you must have a fantastic stove'!"
For now I'm mired in indecision so am sharing some of my test images, to "put them out there and add them into my work" to see if that changes anything for me. Some of the images have had post processing, some not.
Thanks for looking!
@thesuitesixteen has been letting his hair grow this past year so it was time for some new pics.
But photographing my husband isn’t always easy - this was done in our bathroom with me standing in the tub on my tip toes 😉
#robnesbitt #thesuitesixteen #portrait #yyj #yyjmusicians #bnwphotography #bathroomportrait
I often forget to share my instagram pics here on the blog, so feel free to find and follow me over there!
Started 2020 off with some forest bathing, mud bath style... a walk in the woods with dog friends and human friends...
As part of my on-going advocacy work for sled dogs, the full photo set can be found on my sled dog blog!
"If I didn't build it, I wouldn't get to see it."
~ gj pearson
Come along on a wee photographic tour of gj pearson's studio...and mind. A jam-packed space that overflows with art and creativity.
You'll see mystical, fanciful, odd, and endearing characters intertwined with wire and paper. Pounded steel sculptures and delicate drawings and paintings. Kinetic pieces that wind up or are operated by what seems to be a sewing pedal. All magical.
Along the way you'll see some embroidered pieces and handmade jewellery created by fellow artist and wife, Denise Kathleen Nicholls of Firehorse Designs.
And two very adorable cats.
-> gj pearson art and firehorse designs.
What a fun night!
There were not one, not two, but THREE puppy petting stations, incredible donations for the silent auction, delectable treats and a super fun fashion show - where four-legged friends - both adoptable and those already in loving homes - escorted designer-clad fashionistas down the runway for a great cause... the Victoria Humane Society.
VHS spokesdog, Gus was in attendance sporting his new bow-tie and even got to romp with his bestie (and VHS alum), Dova and at the end of the night, Gussy helped cart some purchased auction items to the cars!
(don't worry, he didn't *really* pull it for more than a second and it wasn't heavy and he was paid in Gus-friendly snax)
This is my third time volunteering to photograph this event and it just gets more and more fun each time... thanks to everyone who helped make it such a success!
Check out the photo gallery HERE!