Storytelling is a medium that spans the ages. The narratives that are shared from one person to the next can have a lot of sway, a notion documentary photographers Jack Jackson and Deb Klein are tapping into with their ongoing project, ‘Don’t You Want Me.’ A portrait series centred around the beauty and resilience of LGBTQ people with their rescue dogs, DYWM was founded out of the duo’s “mutual desire for the silenced and marginalised to have their stories told and ultimately to be celebrated for what they could teach the rest of society.”
The two have combined their backgrounds—Jackson the queer and trans community and Klein the world of rescue dogs—to create images that, with each subject’s testimony attached, will hopefully influence a mainstream audience. “We want the world to see how beautiful these once ‘disposable’ people are,” says Jackson. And captured alongside their faithful pup, which has often experienced some of the same discriminatory hardships as their humans, shows how companionship can not only help people and animals survive, but flourish. “Seeing the love, compassion, kindness and brilliance shining out from the very people who get so much grief and abuse has changed me full stop,” adds Klein.
The emotionally charged accounts are so powerful, they plan to shoot in-depth video sessions with some of their participants for people to learn even more about their lives. For now, those in Toronto can watch the project grow in real time. Jackson and Klein have installed a DYWM outdoor banner exhibit at Cherry Beach Dog Park that will expand in size—and reach—as they photograph and share more stories.
A heartfelt thank you to all the photographers, artists, illustrators, and writers who trusted us, dived in, and brought us delight, grace, excitement, courage, wilderness, and wonder over the last five years. Their work not only reflects the bonds we share with our animal companions, it also celebrates their spirit.
None of this would be possible without our four-legged counterparts who sprinkle magic dust time and time again, and our readers, who embraced this kooky idea, rallied around us, and made this world theirs too. With friends like these, who needs nine lives?
February 5, 2019
Harrison Ford has taken on a role that was portrayed in the past by Clark Gable, Charlton Heston, and Rutger Hauer before him: the character John Thornton in the latest cinematic adaptation of Jack London’s 1903 novel The Call of the Wild. John Thornton becomes a human companion to Buck, the big St Bernard-Scotch collie mix who’s the heart of the story. The two meet in Yukon, Canada during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush, and head off on an adventure into the great unknown together. Interestingly, Buck was portrayed using motion capture by Terry Notary, who you might recognise from that dinner scene in 2017’s Palme d’Or winning film The Square. Watch The Call of the Wild on Google Play, iTunes, and more.
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June 17, 2020