For the past few years I have watched my colleagues in the dog photography world get caught up in the new trend of photographing adoptable shelter animals. What a great trend to be caught up in; it is powerful, generous and hugely important work, and tips the balance between survival and euthanasia for so many animals. When a shelter animal is represented with a flattering professional photograph, it is much likelier to get adopted, and thank goodness for those amazing photographers who donate their time. But what I felt was missing from that trend was a wider view. These photographers were seeing the animal shelter (and the process of keeping those animals alive) as one-sided, which of course got me interested in telling the story of the other side: the human volunteers.
Shelter volunteers are amazing people- they are selfless, dedicated, and emotional. They are looking to give their love to something outside of themselves, something that has been abandoned or mistreated or forgotten, and there is nothing more powerful than that.