A few weeks ago we at iLHPfeatured the renowned animal photographer, Alex Cearns of Houndstooth Studio. As promised, Alex agreed to share some of her animal portrait tips with us this week.
iLHP: Hi Alex, thank you for joining us again. What inspired you to become a photography tour leader and can you tell us about your trips?
Alex: Thank you for having me! I’m a huge advocate for getting out and seeing the world. I love that most places in the world are accessible within 24 hours – you just need the time and funds to get to them. Travel has opened my eyes to the way other people live. I’m humbled to see those who have less than we have here in Australia. I think travel broadens a person’s mind, and exposes them to circumstances and situations that fire up the soul and senses. The first thing I always want to do when I get back from a trip is to go again.
Alex Cearns is one of Australia’s most awarded pet and wildlife photographers. Her Houndstooth Studio is a leader in the market of animal portrait photography. Her natural animal handling skills, remarkable images and contribution to lives of rescued animals has earned her high regard across Australia’s animal lovers. With over 50 awards to her name since 2008 (including a nomination for the 2014 Australian of the Year) she has worked tirelessly to capture and showcase the essential joy that people find in animals.
I know spring is coming but let’s rewind a little bit to this blizzard we underwent during this winter because it offered very interesting things. So how do you photograph extreme conditions in a way nobody does? It depends on the way you look at it.
Part 1 of this series had a common approach winter photography, mostly from a landscape photography point of view. Here, I wanted to explore the situation with a different eye. I wanted to look at perspectives that people wouldn’t see by themselves. I wanted to look at those tiny things that we would forget, but that the camera lens can make us see differently, thanks to the depth of field and bokeh that our eye cannot reproduce naturally.
I have been a proud dog owner my entire life. There has probably not been more than a month in between the passing of a beloved dog before another four-legged friend was welcomed into my home.
Currently I have two dachshunds: Thumper and Truffles. Thumper has undergone two back surgeries due to several slipped discs that left him paralyzed in the hind legs since the early age of five (he is currently 13). Thumper was recently diagnosed with cancer for the second time in two years and had his ear canal removed on Christmas Eve. He is undergoing chemotherapy at the present time.
Truffles joined our family 11 years ago while I was residing in Florida. Truffles and I were acquainted while Thumper and I were at the vet’s for a routine visit when another dachshund owner and I began talking. The lovely lady had a new chocolate dachshund puppy and was telling me that her friend had one more puppy that she was not able to care for because she had a baby on the way. I quickly took the doxie owner’s phone number and contacted her immediately after the visit. My friend and I rushed over to meet Truffles. I instantly fell in love with her and took her home right away. The owner at the time only asked for the $150 vet expenses she had incurred. My best friend Ally graciously offered to cover the cost as a gift to me. Truffles is by far one of the best gifts I have ever received to date.
I thought a good way to give back to these loving animals in need was to donate $1 for every share + like of this post on Facebook to a local animal shelter till January 31, 2015. I hope by spreading the word I will be able to help raise awareness for our furry friends in need and give them a voice that so many of them desperately need.