Have you heard the rumors that I'll be creating another dog photography book? Well, the rumors are true! As "Tails of the Pacific Northwest" begins to wind down, I figured it was time to announce the new book, while it's fresh on people's minds.
"Working Tails of the Pacific Northwest" is a book strictly about and for working dogs. Whether the dog be in training to become a working dog, is currently working or is retired from working, they are all welcome!
I want to tell their stories, through beautiful imagery and fascinating bios. I am so excited about this book!
Why Working Dogs?
Because I relate to them. I am a border collie in human form and love to work. I recently had to lay low as I recovered from a surgery to replace 2 discs in my neck with titanium and I still found ways to work. (I'm all healed up now.)
I am fascinated by a working dog's focus and drive. Their need to work and how much joy they get out of working. (D0gJoy!) They work for the sheer pleasure of working and maybe their favorite toy. The love to please their human partners too. It's a beautiful relationship.
Working dogs are misunderstood for a variety of reasons, all of which I'm working to rectify.
If ever we meet in person, I will be happy to expand on this.
You Now Know The "Why", Let Me Tell You How!
First, I have to explain that the last 3 books that I created were of benefit to working dog organizations, such as Project Canine and Rogue Detection Teams.
I invested a lot of time in curated relationships with Project Canine and Rogue Dogs and we are all still great friends to this day.
When the planning process began for Working Tails of the Pacific Northwest, I began looking for an organization to work with. Their part in all of this would be to share about Working Tails on their social media channels. In turn, I would donate a portion of the registration fee, which is usually 50%.
To date, the books have raised nearly $4,000 for my partners.
I had an organization in mind, began to build a relationship with them so that we could become partners, but, in the end, the "yes" never came. I was disappointed, to be sure, but I believe everything happens for a reason. I just had to figure it out.
The Niche I've Built
Someone very wise told me that I should invest in myself whenever possible. I've carried that advice with me for a long time.
Over the past 5 years, I have worked really hard to become not just a good photographer, but the photographer that captures the essence of the working dog. I had it in my head that when other photographer's spoke about working dogs, they would think of me. I guess it worked, because I received a message the other day from a photographer who said exactly that... "I was talking about working dogs and thought of you". That was affirming.
I feel that I have created a nice little niche for myself here in the PNW as a working dog photographer.
The feeling is so strong, that I even created a website specifically for working dog photography.
If you didn't check out the website, basically I want to create a community of working dog teams. I also want to serve that community at no cost. Yep. No cost. Photography isn't cheap, but these teams deserve so much more than we give them!
Enter "The Working Dog Photographer". I have even created an Instagram page! That makes it official, doesn't it? What does this all have to do with the new book?
Instead of investing in a working dog organization who may, or may not, be a good partner, I am going to invest in other working dog teams, in a round about way.
The Working Dog Photographer is supported by a small Patreon community, my dog photography business and the occasional donation. I do not charge for my services and if artwork is involved, I charge the wholesale price.
This isn't about me, it's about the teams!
The Investment In Working Dogs...and Myself
Here is how I will re-invest the registration fee to the working dog community.
The registration fee for Working Tails of the Pacific Northwest is $99. Instead of donating 50% of it to my partner charity, I am investing 100% of it into working dogs!
In order to work with a working dog team at NO COST to them, I need $299. That includes the session fee, the booking fee and some social media sized digital files.
If 30 dogs register to be featured in Working Tails of the Pacific Northwest at $99 each, I can work with 10 working dog teams at no cost to them. (I am almost giddy thinking about this!)
If you know me at all, you know this is where my heart is and where my passion lies.
I believe that working with working dogs is my calling and I have a deep desire to answer that calling.
When I first began to consider this scenario, I talked with my husband, Tony, my business coach, Craig and my friend Marika. I need to make sure that what I was trying to do was above board and ethical. I didn't want to be moving money around in any deceptive sort of fashion. All three of them told me to move forward.
So, I did some research, contacted an attorney and then decided how to go about this without having to set up a non-profit (which is laborious and really wouldn't apply to what I'm doing anyway.)
The registration fees WILL be used to work for a working dog team, whose story will be told.
This is where it gets fun. Here is how I'll tell their story:
Now that you know what I'm trying to accomplish, let me just share one last thing with you.
I WANT TO DO THIS FULL TIME!
I want to slowly move all of my efforts from Seattle Dog Photographer over to The Working Dog Photographer. (Seattle Dog Photographer on IG is getting crowded now and it's time to let that go.)
With the support of my Patreon community, I can begin to move forward. With the support of the registration of the new book, I can move forward a bit faster! 10 teams!
My hope is that you, dear reader, and people with whom you chat will also become excited about the things I'm building for our working dog teams.
If you'd like to support my work, consider joining me on Patreon.
If you have any questions about what I'm building, please don't hesitate to reach out.
Hugs to your Dog!