Monday, 11 August 2014

The process or the end result?

Hello again

So as I'm feeling happy on this beautiful Monday morning, I thought it was about time to treat you all to a snippet of my first exhibition, combining photography with music to excite and exhilarate. For those of you that follow me for the animals, do not worry animals will always feature.

Whether putting together these images, compiling a new song, or training the dogs or horses, I have found that there seem to be two very different stances as to how people keep motivated;

One is by focusing on the outcome, the end result. 
The other is by enjoying the process, the activity in its own right.

Sometimes rushing to reach that end result, can lead to problems, affecting the well-being of all involved due to the intense pressure that one may put on him/herself. It can lead to the ever growing fad of finding that magical 'quick fix' rather than taking life as it is and enjoying the ride.

I enjoy the process, it is the process of working with art, music or animals that brings the therapeutic effect. I'm speaking both personally, and professionally here, personally it makes me live in the moment - a sort of meditation if you like - and professionally I witness people change as they learn to relax and enjoy living in the moment, without worrying about the past or the future.

Anyway, enough of my ramblings, you just want a peak at the pictures don't you ;)

This guy was amazing, we had a long chat when he stopped after this session. I showed him some of the images and noted that he looked a bit worried in the first. He then carefully explained the sheer amount of politics when spraying over a fellow artists tag, all made sense then! I love the contrast between the man in the suit stuck in his business bubble with the artist - both absorbed in their own lives only inches away from one another.


For those critical eyes, you can see that I have kept the images as raw as possible, without processing. This better reflected the mood of the subjects and of myself. Spot the added paws too, additional designing!

Friday, 11 July 2014

Can human-animal relationships be mutually beneficial?

So, I know that it has been a while, lets just say I have been away overcoming life's challenges and learning from them.

I have gone about starting this blog once more, this time with a focus not only on animal welfare and training ideas (although the theme will underpin all that is said) Instead I want to engage with you through an exploration of the therapeutic benefits that we all receive from the simpler things in life.

As an animal behaviourist, I began my career with a slightly narrow-minded belief that my life-long ambition would be to make sure humans stop destroying the well-being of the animals on our planet. Hhhmmm, well, I now cringe when I admit to this!!

There is just so much more to consider within the dynamics of the relationships that humans and animals have in our society, can we work together instead to promote a more positive attitude, simply helping to balance the well-being of both the human and the animal?

Since starting out, I have seen how relationships can be out of balance, whether it is the well-being of the animal at risk, the well-being of the human at risk, or of both. What I really love, what really truly inspires me, is when I see both human and animal flourish in a happy, healthy dynamic.

To end this little starting blog, I just wanted to let you in on an experience that I have had earlier this year. With a series of unfortunate events, including the untimely death of a close friend, the sudden passing of my beloved stallion Zachery, and a marriage breakdown (well - breakdown on his part with a 21 year old! but lets move on) I took my two dogs for a walk on the beach. Whilst considering who I am, where I am going, and many more deep and conflicting thoughts, I spotted my beautiful Boxer x SBT Sheba living in the moment. Within that moment I left my irrational mind behind, and laughed out loud, not stopping to look backwards. Surely this moment in my relationship with Sheba could be considered mutually beneficial?