I am completely and totally entranced the moment I hear the opening guitar riff of The Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter". I have to stop whatever I'm doing and crank up the volume. In the car by myself, I blow out my ear drums.
It might be heresy to say this, but apart from this one song, I'm just not that into The Stones. It's because of this that it took me about 4 days to come up with this blog post based on the week 11 theme of "Favorite Song" for the Pet Photography 52 Weeks Project. I was sitting at the desk, editing images when this song came on my Pandora channel (Tennessee Whiskey Radio if you're interested and a fan of Chris Stapleton, I highly recommend it) and dawn broke upon my marble head.
I don't own one Rolling Stones album, but never cease to have a visceral reaction to this song. Of course! Gimme Shelter is one of my favorite songs, which is fitting because I volunteer my time at two different municipal shelters every week, believing strongly in the service they provide to the community.
Clear the Shelters 2017
If you haven't heard of the annual "Clear the Shelters" event, where have you been? Many people don't know that concept was started right here in north Texas by the Irving municipal shelter and in 3 short years has blossomed into a nationwide event is responsible for over 153,000 animals being adopted with over 80,000 in 2017 alone. If you'd like to have your local shelter participate, you can learn more on the Clear the Shelters website.
When not creating family and pet portraits in an around Dallas, I enjoy a number of other photography genres such as macro, street, photojournalism and documentary. Last year I decided to photograph the Carrollton Animal Services and Adoption Center's Clear the Shelters experience. I arrived before the doors opened and stayed until the last animal was adopted before closing. I shared the images with the shelter and both they and the city used them in various city web and printed materials (if you click on the link above, you'll see some of my images on the shelter's website).
The most rewarding feedback I received regarding the images was from the architect firm that designed the building. They commented that my images "gave life to their design" and that "We can have a beautiful building, but when its photographed without animals/people, it's so stark. We recently had one photographed with the thoughts of bringing in animals/people, but it appeared so staged." I was thrilled to hear that the story I wanted to tell, that of giving shelter and a second change to helpless animals that cannot speak for themselves, came through in my images.
Don't go! You've got other posts to read starting with The Hoof & Hound Photographer covering the Lancaster UK area and then continue clicking on the link at the bottom of each post to see each photographer's musical taste and interpretation of this week's theme. So sit back, relax and put on your own favorite music as you take a few minutes to enjoy some beautiful pet photography.
Tracy Allard of Penny Whistle Photography is a Certified Professional Photographer with the organization Professional Photographers of America; a designation held by fewer than 2,500 photographers nationwide and a hallmark of consistency, technical skill, artistry and professionalism. Penny Whistle specializes in both natural light and studio photography providing family and pet portraits as well as corporate headshots and commercial photography in her studio located in old town Carrollton as well as out on location in Coppell and surrounding communities in Dallas – Fort Worth, Texas.