We’ve been working on creating a new feature that we are extremely excited to announce . . . Statement Sessions! Laura offered to kick it off with a session that is very near and dear to her. Please read below to find out more about Statement Sessions and how you can participate!! Stay tuned for Nichole’s upcoming session . . .
Make a statement!
As photographers, we have the ability to make visual statements. Have you ever been scrolling through a website and the only reason you read the text was because the image next to it drew you in?
These days we tend to have very short attention spans, and there’s no guarantee that someone will stop and read our writing. How can you make your statement clear with your images? Is there an issue that has been tugging at your heart? Think of ways that you can use your skills to help someone that may not have their voice heard otherwise.
How it all began . . .
At some point in our lives, most of us have felt a special connection with an animal. Those who know me well, know that I am an extreme animal lover. I guess you could say that it all started when I was about 20-months-old. My first bond was created when my parents took me to get my first dog, a Sheltie named Sam. From that point on we were pretty much inseparable. In fact, most of my childhood pictures feature Sam; it’s almost as if he were my little brother (haha).
On a Fall day in 1994, my dad picked me up from school and asked me if I was hungry. At 14-years-old, I was always starving, so I eagerly said yes and requested a Hardee’s Frisco Burger (hahaha). I thought I had hit the jackpot; I didn’t have to ride the bus home, and I was getting to eat junk food! As we were riding in the car, my dad looked over at me and said that “Sam had to go back to the vet today.” My reply of “again?” was not of shock, because Sam had been having kidney problems. My parents were taking him once a week for dialysis. That’s when my dad’s eyes welled up, and he said “no, Laura, this time Sam won’t be coming home.” I looked at him in disbelief and yelled, “No!!” He went on to explain that Sam was in too much pain, and it wasn’t fair to prolong his suffering. At 14, you don’t really understand these things, all I wanted was my Sam back. My dad then handed me Sam’s collar and said “I thought you might like to keep this.” For a week, I kept that collar with me at all times. The first few nights, I held it and cried myself to sleep. That was the first time I had experienced the loss of a pet/friend.
My Statement: Saving a Life!
An issue that has been tugging at my heart for sometime now, is the welfare of shelter animals. After recently watching One Nation Under Dog my eyes were opened to an atrocity that is happening in some shelters across the nation. If you choose to watch this movie, I want to forewarn you that there are 3 minutes of extremely disturbing footage in the Betrayal portion (there’s a disclaimer before they show it). The reason that scene is so disturbing is because of how some animals are being put down. I know that ignorance is bliss, and when it comes to the treatment of animals, sometimes it’s easier to pretend that these things don’t happen.
After watching the film, I decided to start volunteering at a local shelter. Whether I was going to donate my photography services or my time didn’t matter, I just knew I had to start doing something . . . anything! That got me thinking of unique ways that I could help spread the word about the benefits of adopting from a shelter/rescue.
I contacted the Greater Birmingham Humane Society (GBHS) and mentioned that I would love to help spread the message of the importance of adopting shelter animals. The ladies at GBHS were kind enough to allow me to come in and photograph a family going through the adoption process. The family was then gracious enough to allow me into their home to document them acclimating their new pup (Boomer) into their sweet family. As you’ll see, he made himself right at home! That was such a special moment to witness, and I’d like to thank everyone involved in helping this session come to fruition!
What’s your statement?
Who can you help with your photography services? It doesn’t have to involve helping animals, it can be anything that you feel drawn to.
We’d love to see Your Statement!
We want to help you spread the word about your cause, so please submit your Statement Sessions to firstname.lastname@example.org.