We asked brilliant wildlife photographer Jasmine Pasha to turn her camera on the most domesticated of creatures, to see what her camera might capture of their animal experience
So far we’ve followed Billy’s nose through fragrant, frenetic Southall in London, and narrowly avoided falling in the Thames with Cookie. We’ve also done some ethical wrangling around the dog project, and how to tell another creature’s story. In this behind-the-lens interview find out more about Jasmine’s love for dogs, her journey towards becoming a wildlife photographer and some of her highlights on working on the project.
Hi Jasmine, tell us about your journey towards becoming a wildlife photographer
As a child, I’d always take great pleasure in spending time outdoors: playing with worms, making what I’d convinced myself were ground bird nests, and I’ll never forget my first ever hedgehog encounter! My interest in nature and wildlife really came into its own, however, as I began to discover photography as a young adult.
As any photographer of any genre will tell you, you have to get to know your subject in order to successfully photograph it. Whenever I had camera in-hand, I was drawn to nature and wildlife, so for me this meant taking the time to learn about different animal and plant species. Photography has really fuelled my passion for the natural world, and the two now go hand in hand.
I’ve also met some amazingly adorable, funny, and friendly dogs – who were all naturals in front of the camera!
My love for the natural world quickly developed into a fascination of the coexistence of human beings and nature. Photography allowed me to capture this relationship by celebrating, for example, the way in which wildlife has adapted to the human-made environment. I continue to be amazed by wildlife’s intelligence and their ability to survive and thrive in spaces that were not built with them in mind. I love nothing more than spending time in nature, as well as waiting for and observing wildlife with camera in-hand. In addition to nature and wildlife, I love to document my travels through photography.
How have you found working on the Dogs using Slow Ways project?
I’ve met some truly wonderful dog owners who were kind enough to get involved with the project. I’ve also met some amazingly
adorable, funny, and friendly dogs – who were all naturals in front of the camera! It’s been fascinating to observe how different dogs of
different breeds, personalities, and ages will behave in what is loosely a similar situation. Overall, it’s been an absolutely awesome and
You’ve also written reviews informed by anecdotes and stories told to you by their owners?
Spending time with the owners and hearing all about their dogs’ characteristics, coupled with my observations on the day of the shoot, was a lot of fun. As with most families, there’s usually a playful nickname for at least one person in the family, and the same applies to our four-legged family members too! In Stan’s case, he’s usually up to some sort of mischief. During our walk, Stan’s owner recollected a time when Stan had helped himself to half a birthday cake that was, for the record, still sealed in its box and inside a carrier bag! The name ‘cheeky chops’ has since stuck!
Are you a dog person?
Since I can physically remember. Growing up, I would bury myself in dog books, loaning them out from my local library; learning about breeds, behaviour, and maintenance – planning (in vain) the dog I’d one day own. I would get my dog fix through close friends who owned dogs, going on walks with them after school. I’ll never forget how overjoyed I’d be when they’d let me hold the lead!
I’ve unfortunately never been in a position to take on a dog, but I’ve always wanted one and most probably always will!
What were some of the more memorable moments working on this project?
Spending time with dogs – it’s good for the soul! Meeting new people – genuinely friendly human beings, extremely easy and pleasant to work with. And exploring new areas/Slow Ways routes – I’ve come away with places I will definitely be revisiting!
Of course, dog walkers are that already – walkers. however, this project may open their eyes to new routes they could try, on their own or with groups of other dog owners
How would you like for people to respond to this project?
Of course, I’d love for people to enjoy the imagery – a great deal of thought went into planning and composing the images, which isn’t the easiest of tasks with moving subjects who can be unpredictable at times! It’s important to me that the heart of the project is appreciated. Shining a light on dogs using Slow Ways gives a different perspective to what we’ve seen thus far with Slow Ways. It’s genius.
Of course, dog walkers are that already – walkers. However this project may open their eyes to new routes they could try, be it on their own or with groups of other dog owners. There’s so much potential!
- Like the dog content? See Cookie walking Sunbury-on-Thames to Hounslow here…
- … and Billy walking through Little India in London’s Southall here
- How to tell another creature’s story? Read more about the ethical wrangling behind Dogs using Slow Ways project here
From an early age, I loved nature and being outdoors. Growing up, I was also no stranger to a camera, as we made plenty of memories, in the form of both stills and video. The point at which I realised I wanted to pursue photography was when I was given my late grandfather's film SLR camera, an Asahi Pentax SV. Starting my journey into photography with a fully mechanical camera helped me develop a strong technical discipline. It was a pivotal moment and led me to specialise in photography during my Foundation Diploma in Art & Design, and later, go on to complete a fine art based BA (Hons) Photography degree. I take great pleasure in sharing my images and experiences through public speaking, and am very proud to have had images published online, in print, and awarded in photographic competitions.