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Gunther

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A VERY SPECIAL ANNIVERSARY//BAY AREA'S BEST DOG PHOTOGRAPHER JESSE FREIDIN

I can't believe a year has already gone by. Can you? Exactly one year ago today I was in the studio with a group of my close friends, sewing and taping and glueing and getting drooled on by some of my favorite dogs in the city. Pulling Polaroids and flashing strobes and laughing and pushing myself to be truly creative. What had begun as sort of a 'creative dare' had become a fully deveopled, living and breathing project. I love a good challenge, and I also love finding excuses to bring together ecclectic sources of inspiration. The Doggie Gaga Project was really just a reason to surround myself with talented, creative, and smart people who inspire me- and create something cooperatively. And that is exactly what we did.

The success of The Doggie Gaga Project can be attributed to many things. People like to talk about the great timing we had, the unique ideas, the artistry, etc. I like to attribute it to these things:

Anne and Dave at The Impossible Project, Craig, Meg, Zona, Summer, Kyl, Tina, Connor, Val, Rebecca + Rebecca, Alex, Nicole, Diana, Carolyn, Ana, Terra, Bert, Kelly, Booker, Gunther, Pancake, X-dog, Kiku, Bob, Jackson, and Jennings.

To celebrate the official One Year Anniversary of The Doggie Gaga Project, I've put together a video of never-before-seen footage of our first shoot, as well as a bunch of my favorite clippings and images. I hope you all enjoy looking at these as much as I do. It's a great marker for my career as a photographer, but more importantly has been an incredible lesson in staying true to your creative vision, pushing the limits, and allowing yourself to be an artist.

 

 

And a few of my favorite 'behind the scenes' shots, by two of my favorite San Francisco portrait and lifestyle photographers: Meg Messina and Christine Zona:

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THE DOGGIE GAGA PROJECT//FINE ART DOG PHOTOGRAPHER JESSE FREIDIN

Last night the studio was covered in multi-colored Polaroid carnage and dog treats. And I was in heaven. My amazing crew of Doggie Gaga cohorts began making some last minute adjustments to our costumes while I set up the camera. Since this entire project has been, from start to finish, a total celebration of fearless and original creativity, I decided to keep my studio set-up incredibly simple. Simple lighting, simple background, and simple propping. After much tossing and turning the night before, I realized that I wanted the costumes and photographic process to stand out, and nothing else. Multi-head strobe kits and color gels and wind machines had no place here. I wanted the character of the film and the texture of the fabrics to speak for themselves. So I placed the dogs on a couple of dirty apple boxes and waited to see what happened...

All images are untouched Polaroid T-669 instant prints, shot with a Horseman field camera and Polaroid back. It doesn't get more analog and amazing than that. To be honest, it's the most difficult way to photograph dogs, but produces such warm, textured images. It's a true salute to my favorite photographic company on the planet, and the people who are taking risks to keep it alive.

Want to vote for your favorite? Want to see more? Want to learn more about the crew? Visit the official Doggie Gaga Project Facebook page.  We'll be posting videos and more photos soon.

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