I’m always honored when clients invite me back to their homes to photograph their dogs for a second or third or fourth time. During my recent trip to San Francisco I had the pleasure of working with two wonderful repeat clients and Teddy is one of them. Teddy was rescued from a busy, high-kill Los Angeles animal shelter by one of my favorite dog rescue groups, Wags and Walks Rescue. He was then spotted by my client on the Wags and Walks website, quickly adopted, and swept up to lovely Palo Alto, CA where he lives a joyful life with a sunny back yard, a bunch of sweet and smart kids to hang around with, and one very devoted Mom who teaches him about contemporary art and loves him to pieces.
I first photographed Teddy about three years ago, and returned for our second San Francisco dog photography session just as my client’s last child was heading off to college. After years of raising four great kids and watching them all head off to impressive universities, the house was about to feel a whole lot quieter - which is an emotionally charged moment for any parent. Our photography session centered around how Teddy pulls the family together - everyone loves him, and he loves everyone right back. We played in the yard (built just for him), lounged on the couch, created some portraits for the kids to take back to college and of course took some time to photograph Teddy alongside my clients. I’ve been so fascinated with abstraction lately, and am really leaning into a new way of creating family portraits that pull away from traditional poses and composition, and instead take away elements of the human subjects so that the canine subject really controls the frame. It’s challenging and weird and fun and interesting and I love it. My clients are loving it, too.
A few years ago I put together one of my very beautiful, artisan-crafted portfolio boxes to house a series of eight editions for this client. One of the best parts about a portfolio box (aside from the fact that they are amazing artifacts on their own, with custom book fabrics etc), is that it gives my client and I room to grow. For this recent dog photography session I helped my clients curate a few more editions to add to that original box, as well as a larger beautiful print for their walls.
What a very special and fun and creative project. Thanks Teddy, you’re a very good dog.