I've been meaning to feature British photographer Eloise Leyden's book, Slum Dogs of India, for some time. When the Academy Award Nominations were announced this morning, I remembered "Slumdog Millionaire" won Best Picture last year, and thought today is the perfect day to celebrate the actual slum dogs of India through these amazing photographs.
I love the deep, rich color of these works. I love that Leyden chose to include people in her compositions, to highlight the reality to dogs and Indians competing and cooperating to achieve an existence in their poor, crowded, beautiful land. I also love that during the year Leyden spent photographing the dogs, she became involved with TOLFA (Tree of Life for Animals) an Indian-based charity that treats, neuters and vaccinates owned (often working animals) as well as owner-less (stray dogs and cows predominantly) at its hospital/shelter located near Pushkar in Rajasthan. A portion of book sales also go to TOLFA.
The book features 150 images and is as much about India as its dogs. It is available here. Also, limited edition giclee prints of Leyden's photographs are available at her website. She is now back in Great Britain photographing pups in people's homes. If you are in the Dorset or Hampshire area and looking for a one-of-a-kind pet photographer, contact Eloise. The book, a print, or a session with her would make a great Valentine's Day gift.