Back in June, 2019, I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Carolyn and photographing her gorgeous gang in the Chiltern Hills.
Carolyn first discovered LNP through Help Promote Our Paws, as she has 4 bouncing Bearded Collies. Carolyn also has the lovely Vinnie, a 21 year old (22 in May) Appaloosa. It was therefore decided that we would have two photoshoots together; the first at Vinnie’s Yard in the morning, and the second in the afternoon at Maidensgrove Common with the Beardies.
Vinnie is stabled at a stunning yard in Radnage, so we spent a couple of hours in the glorious weather exploring and photographing at a variety of ‘mini locations’ across the yard. Dan, Carolyn’s son, also joined us to help assist throughout the photoshoot, and of course to get a few photographs of his own…
In the afternoon, Neil, Carolyn’s husband, also joined us along with their 4 dogs – Odie, Jag, Lily & Fidget, at Maidensgrove Common. We were very lucky with the weather as it stayed dry and sunny up until the last few minutes of the photoshoot. The dogs were full of energy and loving life so we were able to take some incredible action shots, portraits and some of the pack together.
For the Help Promote Our Paws Campaign, I asked Carolyn if she would write some words about her pack and their story…
“ I have shared my life with Bearded Collies for over 40 years, it’s always been the shaggy unkempt look that melts my heart whenever I see one.
To me, they always look like they have just returned from some mad adventure or are plotting the next one.
Beardies are called bouncing Beardies for a reason. They are so full of joy, and walking just can not express their inner joyfulness. Happy, spirited, clever yet patient, sometimes wilful but always oozing pure joy. The “feel good” breed born to brighten your day.
Every one of my dogs has an incredible personality. Human like. So individual. At the moment my tribe consists of four, ranging in age from 14 to 5yrs:
Fidget, the eldest, the matriarch of the group, is kind and gentle but firm. She stands for no nonsense with the younger members always keeps a watchful eye on their antics. She’s 14 yrs old. Her eye sight is going and her arthritis limits her walks but her voice is as clear and as loud as the day she was born. She wants anyone who calls on us to know she’s there. I always think if she was a human old lady she would be barking orders at us from her armchair. She insists on coming out for her daily constitutional. The others may be haring around chasing each other or herding us, but she walks calmly, with purpose, on her well worn route. And she still tries to jump into the back of the car! She was a magnificent jumper until a couple of years ago. No gate or fence could contain her if she decided she wanted to be on the other side. She loved agility.
Odie is special. I swear he’s an angel in dogs clothing. Heaven sent. Never a kinder, more thoughtful dog was ever born. Noble. He has such an air of serenity. His dark brown eyes seem to look right into your soul. I feel he knows exactly what I’m thinking and how I am feeling even before I do. Well, that is until it’s time to go for a walk or to go to a dog show when he can not contain his excitement. He loves to work with me. He listens. I mean he really listens. And watches you. He is so tuned in, I have to be on my game when we are training or competing as he doesn’t miss a cue. He’s going to be 11 yrs old soon and he’s an old soul. Been here before, I’m sure. I often think he gives me a bit of a debrief after a show or a training session when he just looks at me and then jumps on my lap for a cuddle.
Lily. Where do I start with Lily. She’s a free spirit. An enigma at times. Confident. Fun loving. Secretive. Mischievous. A Tom Boy at heart. An eternal puppy despite being almost 9 yrs old (on March 26th). She’s agile. Rather fond of walking on the back of sofa’s. Eating compost, digging craters in flower beds, hiding in bedrooms for peace and quiet, (usually after digging to Australia). She’s had one litter of four puppies and although she did a good job with her offspring, I can’t honestly say she was maternal. After about day 5 she was very happy for me to sleep with her babies so she could go off and get her beauty rest. She’s a character. She makes us laugh and shout on a daily basis. “Lily! Get off or get out of that!!” She’s often found upside down, lying against the front door, sound asleep.
Jag is our youngest member at 5 yrs old. Jag is Lily’s son. Our big bear. We often say we should have called him Bear. He has a habit of wrapping his front paws around your arm. I’ve never experienced that with a dog before. So human like. It’s particularly noticeable when I lift him off the grooming table. He is the only dog ever to sit on the edge of the Belfast sink when you wash his front legs. It’s hilarious. He sits down. Makes himself comfortable then offers you a paw for shampooing! He’s probably the most social of the tribe. The others like people but Jag is more like the mate you head down the pub with. Easy going. Sporty. Loveable. Up for a laugh. Definitely game for a trip out. When I think of Jag, I hear Reggae music in my head. I see him as a laid back beach bum living in the Caribbean, enjoying everyday that comes, beer in hand, having a laugh with his mates, loving life.”
Thank you Carolyn, Neil & Dan for inviting me into your life to capture some very special memories for you. I truly loved meeting & photographing you all. It was a day I will never forget.
Do you have a large number of animals? Or maybe they do not all get along? Splitting your photoshoot across a full day is the perfect solution for a stress-free, relaxed and enjoyable experience. Each and every photoshoot LNP offers is bespoke and can be tailored just for you & your animal’s needs.
All-day photoshoots are my favourite as it allows us time to really delve in and focus on each animal individually. If you would like to find out more about this experience, or would like to know how I can tailor a photoshoot to your needs, drop me an email or give me a call: