An award-winning photographer has made it her mission to change these stats. Last year, French born Sophie Gamand began a project to change the perception of pit bulls, a breed that is often deemed dangerous, violent and aggressive. Calling it "Flower Power: Pit Bulls of the Revolution," New York City-based Gamand created the series to show pit bulls in a softer light - portraying them to look like "hippies, soft fairy-tale-inspired characters, feminine and dreamy." To achieve this, she places homemade floral crowns on shelter pit bulls and poses them against pastel backgrounds in hopes viewers see the breed's true beauty, not the negative stereotypes often associated with them.
To date Gamand has volunteered hundreds of hours to photograph approximately 120 pit bulls from New York City shelters including Sean Casey Animal Rescue, Second Chance Rescue, Animal Haven, Brookhaven Animal Shelter and Hempstead Town Animal Shelter.
Her passion project seems to be paying off. Approximately half the pit bulls have been adopted, a rate much higher than the above mentioned national average. She has also helped shine a light on the bigger problem of prejudice against pit bulls, as her series has made its way onto hundreds of online media publications, while also capturing the attention of big-name outlets including BuzzFeed, Huffington Post and Oprah Magazine.