By Jack Williams
Forget pampered pooches and fashionable pets, one photographer has made it his mission to change opinions on a far more humble creature: The everyday PIGEON.
Andrew Garn’s beautiful images would look right at home in a portrait gallery, showing what some people consider “flying rats” in all their splendor.
They include close-ups of eyes, feathers and wings; headshots; images of newly-hatched chicks, just a couple of days old; and even shots of the birds in full flight.
The photographer began exploring a project about the birds – specifically those in New York – in 2007, and to date he estimates he has photographed between 2,000 and 3,000 pigeons.
These birds were shot in an array of locations – from homes and coops, to the Wild Bird Fund and the streets of New York City.
Andrew said: “I want to open viewers’ eyes to the beauty and intelligence of pigeons.
“I hope the photographs surprise and beguile, so that people will think of pigeons in a more elevated way.”
There has been a great pigeon-human connection throughout history, Andrew said, something that has fascianted him on his photographical journey for this projects.
Pigeons were the first domesticated birds, and Genghis Khan created a postal system using pigeons that covered all of Eurasia, from Eastern Europe to the Pacific.
Many of Darwin’s theories on evolution were based on the study and breeding of his own pigeons also.
Going forward, Andrew plans to continue educating the public on these birds, adding to his photography series along the way.
The photographer, whose series, “The New York Pigeon – Behind The Feathers,” was recently converted into a book, said: “If you don’t care for pigeons, I ask that you take a moment and watch a flock in your neighborhood.
“Notice the colours, patterns and personalities – I think it might open your eyes and you might just start to admire their pluck and grit, surviving in dense cities along side of humans.”