I'm a photographer specializing in animal portraits, and I'm pretty sure I have the best job in the world. Most of the dogs you see on this website are or have been up for adoption through Summit Dog Rescue here in Boulder, Colorado. Photo shoots usually end up with me on the ground with a squeaky in my mouth and a dog treat in my hand, pleading with an adorable sweetie who's tuned into everything everywhere to please, please just look at the camera.
Naturally, I'm in love with doing this and can't get enough of it. That's why it's especially rewarding to work with rescue animals. Much of the time they arrive here fresh off days of crowded van transport or they've just landed by private plane into the arms of loving strangers, and you can tell they're pretty much wondering what planet they're on. Even the dogs who've settled into long-term foster care can have that Please Don't Abandon Me look in their eyes. This is where kisses, treats, calm attention and ear scratches come in. Even though every photo shoot ends up with essence of doggie on my clothes and god-knows-what on the lens, there's nothing I'd rather do.
The nickname Chaya was given to me in 1976 before I ever picked up a camera, and it means "reflection" or "mirror."
7TH JULIA M. CAMERON AWARDS (Worldwide Photography Gala Awards, to be exhibited in Berlin in 2016):
Runner Up: "The Introduction"
Finalist: "Family - Boulder, CO 2014"
POPULAR PHOTOGRAPHY MAGAZINE
Finalist, "Your Best Shot," March 2015: "Happy Dog" - Image 27
GROUP SHOW: "Raining Cats and Dogs," July 2016. Dairy Center for the Arts, Boulder, CO.
Honorable Mention: "A Dog's Mind"
MEMBER, HeARTsSpeak.org: Professional and aspiring pet photographers, artists and graphic designers who donate their services to rescue organizations.
Summit Dog Rescue, Boulder, CO: A network of dedicated fosters, volunteers, van drivers, pilots and adopters in the Boulder/Denver area, saving the lives of dogs and cats needing good homes.
International Hearing Dog, Henderson, CO: Turning shelter dogs into hearing dogs.
Mountain Pet Rescue, Winter Park, CO: Finding forever homes for pets in need.
All images copyright Chaya Emily Baumbach, please and thanks. All rights reserved.