AUSTIN (KXAN) - A new portrait project is highlighting the bond between Austin's homeless and their animal companions through a series of photographs and audio recordings by photographer Norah Levine.
"They wanted to share their love for their animals and show people- we're taking care of our animals just as well- if not better- than people with homes do," Levine said about the project's participants.
Levine spent the better part of the last year taking photographs of the homeless and their pets around Central Texas.
- To view a gallery of Levine's photographs click here
"The subject matter of homelessness is not a happy one- but I wanted to find the joy that existed in the subject matter," said Levine. "Getting people to think about it, you know, for just a couple of seconds longer, when they drive by on the street and see somebody with their dog. Maybe they'll think twice about judging their situation."
Levine partnered with the Animal Trustees of Austin and proceeds from the Lifelines Project go to their 4PAWS Program, which provides wellness care, spay/neuter surgeries, and emergency treatment to pets belonging to the homeless population of Central Texas and beyond
The animals don't care that you're homeless- they love you anyway," said one participant in the project, Lynn, who posed on Valentine's Day with her dog Charlie. "Without Charlie- there's nothing- I love him- he means my life- and I would give my life for him- I'll tell you that now."
Sadly, Lynn passed away several months after the photo was taken, with Charlie at her side.
"I hope that people see this and realize that the love that people have for animals crosses all boundaries- people of all walks of life- people of all economic statuses love their animals and want them to be cared for and to be safe," said Gabrielle Amstrer, with Animal Trustees of Austin.
The photographs were on display September 6 at the J. Clark Gallery in Austin.
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