It’s certainly fitting that we celebrate the month most closely associated with the Heart with a feature of Leah Anderson.
Thanks to Leah, who has worked on both of the past HeART of the Horse events, we have a beautiful logo & some wonderful graphics!
|Poster for the Original HeART of the Horse Art Show in 2009|
Leah is passionate about everything she does, be it riding, taking photos or caring for those around her. It was while she was a volunteer for SAFE when she was finishing up at the University of Washington that she was inspired to create her cornerstone project, “Forgotten”, a look at rescued horses and what it means to the people who rescued them in their own words and Leah’s beautiful photographs. Everyone who has ever had the opportunity to enjoy the book has been deeply moved…many of us to tears!
|Leah & myself looking at her book, "Forgotten" - photo: Debbie Hess|
“Forgotten” is available through blurb.com and won their People’s Choice Award in 2008.
Leah is generously donating any profits from the sale of her images on her website Dapple Bay Design or orders of the book “Forgotten” to SAFE this month.
|Lost Boys by Leah Anderson|
I met Leah in May of 2008 while she was working on the "Forgotten" project after her call out to the SAFE Message board for rescued horses to photograph. I immediately offered Coconut as a subject. Leah came out to KCJ stables and spent the morning shooting the "model" coconut as she posed endlessly for the camera. It's almost as if she knew she was a star!
|Coconut as art. photo|
Leah shared those photos with me and they've become some of my favorite images of Coconut Macaroon.
|Coconut in motion (framed in my office!)|
It was at the end of that first photo shoot that I took her up to meet a special little guy who'd been born at KCJ just 17 days earlier...he didn't even have a name.
But she snapped this photo of him on his very first day out on a pasture with his Mom....Sugar....and then some 9 months later they both were surrendered to Maeve & I and this leggy little creature would end up being called "Basil" and eventually registered as Macho Bar None and sold to his trainer, Kelli Jordan who just took him to his first show (but that's another whole blog post!).
In 2009 I had Leah come back out and do a glamor shoot with us as a Christmas gift for my husband Les. He was always so patient with me, my horse activities and the boring (and often dirty) barn attire. I figured he needed a permanent reminder that I *can* clean up OK...
We got fancied up and while the original plan included some seated shots, the weather did not cooperate so we played with what we had and used the old barn as our backdrop and I was very happy with the results.
What a fun day that was, even in the rain! Be sure to check out her work and we look forward to her next project. Whatever it is, it's sure to have her heart deeply embedded in it. I can hardly wait to see what's next for this amazing and talented young woman.
I'll close with this favor to ask....If you happen to know a publisher, please share her project with them. We'd all like to see "Forgotten" offered to the world. You certainly do not have to be close to the project to feel is impact & emotion.