Monday, November 9, 2009

Italian Dogs

Fountain in Syracusa Sicily (photography by Toni Youngblood)

If you are a pet owner, you probably miss your pet when you are away. I have had at least one greyhound since 1997 and love them. I am currently babysitting Virgil, the greyhound for his humans who are vacationing in Italy. This is making me nostalgic for Italy. When I was traveling in Italy---in Sicily and the Lake District of Northern Italy, I was awwwwwwe struck whenever I came upon a canine, and usually asked the owner for permission to pet the pup to get my warm-fuzzy-furry fix. After a while, I decided it would be fun to photograph Italian dogs with their humans. At first I tried candid photographs---the owners did not know they were being photographed. Then I decided that for the best result (still targets), I would ask permission to take a photograph and see their reaction to the request as well as getting them to stand still. This was a challenge to my memory of the Italian language (I spent three months in Rome during architecture school---nearly twenty years prior). Everyone understood my request and obliged. It was very cute in several instances when the human would point to the camera and say to the dog, "vedi, vedi" (look, look!). In all cases I had no doubt that owners held great affection for and were proud of their amici cani. It was a cross-cultural experience. ;o)

Above: This gentleman, from the town of Orta in the Lake District of Northern Italy, chose to pick up his pup for a more intimate shot. I asked what the dog's name was and the man said, "Fritz". I asked why he didn't give the dog an Italian name and he said, "Because the dog is German".
Above: Jack Russell Terrier and friend at the entrance to the Galleria off the piazza adjacent to the Milan Cathedral.
Above: This gentleman told his dog to turn and face the camera and sit.

Above: "Vedi, vedi!"
Above: Galleria shoppers (American fashion influence?)Above: In front of the Galleria McDonald's restaurant (the best place to find a "public" toilet in the shopping center!)
Above: I kept seeing this spotty canine scurrying freely all over the main square in Taormina (Sicily) for several days. Then one day I saw this gentleman with the pup and asked if the dog was his. He said "yes", and I got permission to snap a picture---though the man could hardly get the dog to stand still!
Above: Lady and pooch have the same hairdresser? (Extra points for capturing the nun in the background!)
Above: The hotel cat in Taormina Sicily, who independently volunteered this pose.

No comments:

Post a Comment



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...