I'm so happy to be finally launching Finding Shelter - the photography series I've been working on for the past few months. As I've been seeing so many of these wonderful new dog photography series featuring shelter animals, or senior animals, or service animals, or dying animals, or rescue animals- I can't help but wonder why no one is photographing the people involved in these situations/relationships. Because the human aspect of the human/animal bond is just as important, and unfortunately as a society we tend to look outward first, and inward only if you're lucky.
Finding Shelter is my answer to this. It is a black and white dog photography series about the humans who run our nation's animal shelters, and the intimate bonds they form with the abandoned animals they care for. There is a very quiet, yet powerful, give and take between shelter volunteer and shelter animal that always blows me away. People sign up to be a volunteer at their favorite animal shelter or rescue group because they want to help the animals, or because they can't have their own animal at home and want to spend time with one, or because they are activist-minded and want to do something good for another living being, etc. Whatever the reason a volunteer ends up at an animal shelter, they rarely discuss what they are getting in return. They only discuss what they are giving. My theory, which is expored in this new shelter dog photography series, is that the animals are giving back an equal (if not larger) amount of love and companionship and healing as the human volunteers are giving to them. And that back and forth of emotion forms a symbiotic relationship within the animal shelter system that I find truly fascinating. This is what Finding Shelter is all about.
You can see the series on the website here: http://jessefreidin.com/finding-shelter
I will continue photographing animal shelter volunteers and animal rescue groups for Finding Shelter over the next year, and will keep updating the blog and image gallery with new portraits.
If you are a volunteer or rescue group, and would like to get involved, please don't hesitate to get in touch: studio[at]jessefreidin.com