Giving back to save lives

ANIMAL ADVOCACY

Red the Kelpie x Cattle Dog standing at the studio entrance

ADOPTION PAWTRAIT EXPERIENCE PARTNERSHIP DOG RESCUE NEWCASTLE

Proudly aligned with Dog Rescue Newcastle, located a mere 1.5 hours away from Wootton, I am delighted to contribute to their invaluable mission through my Adoption Pawtrait Experience program.

With the assistance of a dedicated volunteer, a shelter dog is chauffeured to our studio, where they embark on a two-hour journey of studio and countryside bliss. During this immersive experience, I craft captivating imagery that not only supports their adoption profiles but also serves to allure their perfect forever family. Together, we're making a difference, one pawtrait at a time.

Red the Kelpie X in the Studio

THE VERY BEGINNING

Giving back to save lives through great photography is a huge part of who I am and where I've come from. Advocacy for animals is embedded into the very heart of my being.

My journey into shelter pet photography began way back in September 2011. I was undertaking a voluntary transport assignment for a rescue group and picking up two dogs from one of Sydney's largest pounds. This pound no longer exists.

I took my camera with me and snapped a few photos of these dogs. Then a couple of other tiny dogs being collected by another rescue group.

This other group picking up dogs that afternoon was the now-famous Mrs PFT of "Paws for Thought" Rescue. Marika was there to collect her latest rescues... Wallace and Grommit.

Giving back to save lives through great photography

STARTING THE JOURNEY

A week or so later, I woke up on Saturday morning with a revelation. I leapt out of bed having decided to head out to the pound again and start photographing the animals. Surely this would give them a better chance of being noticed by potential adopters.

The pound was a 75km round trip from Kogarah. From that first Saturday, I continued to go out there on a weekly basis for over four years.

In the later years, I enlisted the help of a couple of other talented young photographers. We set up a roster so I could start to have some weekends off to spend with my family.

VALUING THEIR VOLUNTEERS

I left this pound in February 2016 and went on to volunteer for Australia's No. 1 council-run animal shelter... The Sutherland Shire Council Animal Shelter.

It was an honour to be a valued volunteer from January 2017 to December 2019 before heading north to move to our farm.

Now based on the Barrington Coast of NSW, I would love to collaborate with organisations in our region that value the benefits of professional photography. This combined with emotive storytelling to help their companion animals find wonderful forever homes. If your organisation would like my help, please get in touch with me.

Today I volunteer my technical expertise to Let the Ladies Go. I designed and implemented their online adoption process early in the early days of COVID. I provide ongoing support by helping schedule hen adoption days.

ANIMAL CHARITY PAWTNERS & AFFILIATIONS

Over the past 9 years, I've also supported many different rescue groups. From photographing their adoptable pets or events to helping fundraise by creating beautiful calendars, providing imagery for greeting cards, or helping with marketing materials. Below are the groups I have collaborated with since 2011:

Punk's Party

I am a proud HeARTs Speak Artist Member joining a global network of photographers, artists, authors, graphic designers, and advocates who believe in the power of collaboration to be the ambassadors of change.

In January 2017 I was appointed as the volunteer professional photographer for Sutherland Shire Council Animal Shelter and continued this on a pro-bono role on a weekly basis until I left Sydney in September 2019.