About this project
Kehrer Verlag, an elite publishing house in Germany intends to publish Finding Trust in 2013. I am raising half of the funds needed through Kickstarter and KV will provide the rest needed to publish.
Here is a little bit more about how I found Sarvey and also my artist statement below.
The work I produce documents the delicate union that exists between humans and animals. It’s not just the actual places where were our lives often intersect, like a park or forest, but the spaces where our emotions meet. When a creature on an examining table turns toward my camera, I see the universal reactions of pain and confusion in its eyes. The work documents the infirmed animals’ recovery with a sense of wonder as they heal, hoping to return to the wild forests of the Northwest. I hope to capture the palpable emotions in my photographs because I can’t help but contemplate how much we actually know about each other. Finding Trust, the photo essay, began 6 years ago at the Sarvey Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, a small sanctuary 75 miles north of Seattle, Washington where I live and work as a photographer. In 2002 when my mother passed away, I was left looking for something to hold on to, something real to photograph, and found the Sarvey Wildlife Rehabilitation Center. Located in the foothills of the beautiful Cascade Mountain Range, it is a place where injured, wild creatures come to finish their journey or start a new one. It’s a place where I’ve seen love, trust and intuition that equals that of a mother and child; a home where a few humans have come together to save the lives of many precious creatures. I believe we must take care of each other in order to survive. My goal is to present the very important relationship and obligation we have to these animals. I struggled with this project in many ways. Most importantly, I had to get the dirty work done before I could take pictures. I cleaned cages, fed and intubated animals, cut meat, gave medications, etc. Gaining the trust of the amazing people I work with took time, but eventually they saw that my love for these animals was huge...that I was one of them. I struggled with harsh fluorescent lighting, limited time for pictures during moments of crisis with the animals, constant stress from sick and dying animals, all the while looking for moments to photograph the beauty around me. It took a long time before I understood what I wanted to say with these pictures and why I was inspired there. The more I was around these animals, the more I saw their inner beauty and intelligence and the more frustrated I became by our world and how much of nature is neglected or destroyed. I believe the wild creatures among us embody the instinct and love we have lost, and with this I realized more and more the purpose of my work. I received my BFA at Principia College in 1996 after a photography apprenticeship in Marseilles, France. Finding Trust won first place in the 2006 Environmental Photography Invitational and was featured in American Photography 22 and 25. My work has been exhibited at the Seattle Public Library Downtown, The Photographic Center Northwest in “A Delicate Balance”, Critical Mass 2010, The Alice Austen House Museum, NYC 2009 and at the Ansel Adams Gallery in Nappa Valley, CA. With the intention of expanding my work with animals, I visited Borneo to study and document endangered orangutans in sanctuaries, this work appeared in Newsweek Aug. 11, 2009. The outcome of this experience is the beginning of a new body of work I call For The Innocent.
How Finding Trust came to be...........
One balmy September evening in Seattle I noticed a large pigeon wobbling around on the sidewalk. I tried to help him and no matter how close I got, he wouldn't - couldn't - fly away. It looked sick, even poisoned. So I did what my husband pleaded with me not to do, and called 911. They said they would handle it and a minute later I received a call from the Sarvey Wildlife Care Center. It was 10pm and a scratchy voiced man who sounded like I'd gotten him out of bed was on the line. I told him about the pigeon, what little I really knew, and he said, without a pause, "I'll be there in about an hour". He was driving 55 miles to come pick up the bird. I was in shock. We stayed around until he arrived and I watched with a mixture of interest, happiness and envy as he gently picked up the bird and put it into a transport carrier. As he was leaving, I asked if they could use another volunteer. "Are you kidding?" he said. That little pigeon led me on a path that would change my life. I would learn to embrace my mother's passing and would be introduced to the way of the wild creatures. The pigeon led me to my own personal sanctuary; it led me to Sarvey. I have witnessed things at Sarvey which have changed my thoughts forever about our existence as humans and that I cannot ignore. I've experienced a relationship that cannot be explained by science but must be accepted as an extraordinary human/animal bond. I now understand how some humans can connect with animals and how in ancient times we walked with wolves. Do animals have the ability to communicate and love like us? This I cannot prove, but my friend at Sarvey, a two-year-old raven named Angel would call for me at night and I would go to her with only moon shining and she would let me smooth the feathers down her back and we would talk to each other. I had never known a friendship like that before. Animals can transport us to our forgotten history; to a time when we relied on instinct and the power of the forest, before we knew about deadlines, mindless chatter and espressos. Our humanity has been slowly stripped of its nature and inherent wildness, so it's no surprise that recognizing the importance of animals and what they have to offer us is truly difficult. We have come far out of the jungle, but I struggle deeply with all we have sacrificed to get here. Peeling off Interstate 5, 80 miles south of the US-Canadian border, leaving behind the rumbling freight trucks for quiet roads an hour and a half from my home is all it took to leave my frustrations with the human world and join the mysterious world of the animals. Located in the quiet foothills of the lush Cascade Mountain Range in Washington State, The Sarvey Wildlife Care Center is a piecemeal of houses, coyote runs, duck ponds, deer fields, bear cages, beaver pools and raptor flights. It's an animal shantytown held together by rare donations and love. It is a place where injured, wild creatures come to finish their journey or start a new one. It's a place where I've seen love, trust and intuition which equals that of a mother and child; a home where a few humans have come together to save the lives of many precious creatures, this is Finding Trust.
Annie Marie, Seattle 2011
Risks and challenges
Kehrer Verlag plans to publish Finding Trust in 2013, so there is no question that the book will become a reality. There is no risk donating to this project accept for a possible delay in publishing. I will do everything I possibly can to edit and scan to make this dream come true, but I can envision editing hangups like finding new images ( I just found a baby bobcat photograph that I totally forgot about!) that may stall the process or design confluence that might hinder. Publishing my first book might be a bit tricky with all the minute details but I have confidence that everything will align in it's perfect place once all the details are in order. And of course, the book will never be published without your support so please forward to your friends after you pledge!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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