Sunday, November 10, 2013

Sit and Stay: Iconic images of Hollywood stars and their dogs

I searched Time Magazine’s photo essays online until I found one I thought could be comparable to the project I am tackling, and this is it: Photos of Hollywood stars with their dogs. Why is it comparable? Most of the photos essays tackle current events or some fantastical viewings of space or eclipses. I wanted a modest project focused on the human story, a project with images that are fairly easy to capture, and a project with photos that evoke an emotion based on a simple appreciation for life’s nuances. Capturing celebrities with their dogs paints them as common people feeling even though they were in the spotlight. The photos aren’t particularly special, but each illustrates the bond between pooch and owner. Pet lovers would enjoy this photo essay, but so would historians, those interested in old cinema, Hollywood gossips, nostalgic old timers, and even those with an appreciation for fine, simple, black-and-white photography. The audience is narrow, the focus is apparent, the subject is simple enough. I like this essay for its storytelling ability with an everyday concept (people and their dogs) taken in a specific context (lives of celebrities). My essay will probably be similar in capturing an ordinary task (caring for shoes) in the context of Greg’s shoe shining service at Mount Angel. He may not be a celebrity, but he is interesting in his odd hobby.

Below are images from the Sit and Stay photo essay.

Tony Curtis in his Johnny Dark costume in Las Vegas in 1953, with a boxer puppy that was given to him by a fan.
Elizabeth Taylor bathing her cocker spaniel, Amy, in 1950.

Marilyn Monroe with her Maltese, Maf, in 1961. Maf, short for 'Mafia', was Monroe's last dog, and was given to her by Frank Sinatra.
Don Ameche in the pool with his Irish setter, Flanagan, in 1939.
Audrey Hepburn backstage at Paramount Studios with her Yorkshire terrier, Mr. Famous, in California in 1961.
Catherine Deneuve cuddles a tiny pup while filming The Umbrellas of Cherbourg in 1964.
Charles Butterworth dines with his wire fox terrier in 1935.
Elvis Presley poses with a basset hound in honor of his hit song, 'Hound Dog,' at the International Amphitheater in Chicago, in March of 1957.
Flash, MGM's star canine who appeared as a puppy in His Master's Voice, appeared in another eight films for the studio before retiring in 1938.
Charlie Chaplin with his A Dog's Life co-star, Scraps, in 1918.

Source: “Sit and Stay: Iconic Images of Hollywood Stars and their Dogs.” Time Magazine. Time, Inc., 20 Sept. 2013. Web. 10 Nov. 2013 <>. (Note: Originally from Dance, Robert. Hollywood Dogs: Pictures from the John Kobal Foundation. Suffolk, United Kingdom: The John Kobal Foundation, 2013.)

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