To Erase Stigma and Help Them Find a Home, Photographer Turns Pit Bulls Into Adorable ‘Hippie’ Models
Lifestyle| | By Jason Owen
Pit bulls get a bad reputation. Viewed as dangerous, over-aggressive animals with a penchant for erratic, unpredictable behavior, they are often overlooked in adoption shelters. But in reality, given the proper training and upbringing, pit bulls can be the friendliest, most loyal pets you could ever own. And that’s the truth photographer Sophie Gamand is hoping to shed some light on in a new photo series featuring pit bulls portrayed unlike how you’ve ever seen them before.
“I realized pit bulls were always portrayed in very urban, gritty photographs,” writes Gamand on Striking Paws, a photography project dedicated to helping homeless pets. “The imagery associated with these dogs is often harsh, very contrasted, conveying the idea of them being tough. In my opinion, this feeds the myth that these dogs are dormant psychopaths. So I decided to take the other route and portray them like hippies, soft fairy-tale-inspired characters, feminine and dreamy. The idea of Flower Power blossomed.” The project, Flower Power, started in 2014 has now gained more traction with the hashtag #PitBullFlowerPower and is hoping to help find these highly-deserving animals loving homes, instead of being euthanized after families fail to adopt them. “I wanted to see if art was powerful enough to change the way we view pit bulls, and therefore, the way we treat them,” Gamand told A Plus in an email. And the results have been stellar, to say the least. According to A Plus, of the 150 pits that have been featured, most have been adopted. Who knew a simple photograph could help save the life of just one of these precious creatures? For more, you can visit Gamand’s Facebook page, Instagram, or Twitter.
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