While 2020 was a bizarre, unsettling, and fine, I’ll say it – “unprecedented” – year, there were certainly a few bright spots, and working on my 2020 passion project, the Senior Horse project, was one of those bright spots. We also had a bit of a late start due to the stay-at-home order and mandatory quarantines in our state, once I was able to connect with the participants and their horses, the project became everything I was hoping it would be, and so much more.
I already have the best job in the world photographing you and your horses, I do feel that it’s important for me to go out and take pictures for myself, to do something that really “speaks to my soul” for lack of a better phrase. And working with the senior horses in this project over the last year has been so incredibly rewarding and given me so much joy. There’s just something special about these old souls, the “been there, done that” horses that have seen it all, the kind eyes, the softly greying muzzles – there’s a wisdom and a quiet strength there that I was so excited to capture. And hearing their stories, the good and the bad, the sad and the happy, was so gratifying. To see how these old horses are valued, loved, and have purpose in their old age, regardless of their physical ability or monetary “value”, is truly a beautiful thing.
I started this project at the end of 2019, thinking that I’d have spring and summer of 2020 to photograph and document the horses and then be able to share these stories and portraits with you by the end of the year. Well needless to say 2020 had a different idea – and I wasn’t even able to start photographing until the summer, due to restrictions in my area during the pandemic. But once the project was underway, my goodness – it was well worth the wait.
I’ve spoken about it before – how strongly I feel about caring for and honoring our senior horses and how important it is to make sure that our beloved horses have a forever home where they are cherished and loved. Too many times I’ve seen older horses discarded or given away when they no longer served their original purpose – or tossed out into a field to “retire” but not given the proper care and maintenance – they deserve better. So I set out to find a group of like-minded humans who had their own beloved senior horses and wanted to share their stories with the world, and as I worked with these individuals I not only had the opportunity to create some gorgeous portraits with them, but also to make new friends and connections.
I couldn’t have asked for better participants, and I’m so grateful to everyone who participated in this project with me – thank you from the bottom of my heart. I had the opportunity to not only work with amazing seniors and their owners, but to travel around NJ and PA to some incredible farms!
While the project is still not fully wrapped-up, I will be slowly publishing the images and stories from each participant in the coming weeks. I’m so excited to finally share these stories and portraits with the world, and I hope that you guys find their stories as inspiring and heart-warming as I do.
I’ll also be announcing my next big project, my 2021 passion project in the coming weeks! Again it’s something very near and dear to my heart, something that I feel to be important and would like to share with everyone.