Rainbow Sessions Commemorates Pets Through Photography
FRANKFORT, IL – People and their pets often have a strong bond, so much so that the bond is family in nature. So, when this pet nears the end of its life, its family may have a hard time accepting this inevitable goodbye.
Frankfort resident Victoria Vazquez wants to help these families and their pets keep fond memories by offering them free end-of-life photography sessions called Rainbow Sessions.
Vazquez saw a video on TikTok of Lauren Kennedy, a photographer from Maine, which highlighted photography of end-of-life pets and asked other photographers to do the same.
Vazquez was quick to answer the call.
“My whole life revolves around dogs,” Vazquez said. “So, I thought why not help the community and those in need, especially with something so difficult.”
She said she searched the internet to see if anyone else in the area was taking end-of-life photographs for pets and couldn’t find anyone. Thus, Vazquez turned to Facebook with a free photography offer for all members of the community with an end-of-life pet.
Vazquez said a few people have already contacted her for the service.
“I had a few inquiries as to whether it was really free, and I said, ‘Yeah, it’s 100 percent,'” Vazquez said.
Some people who have contacted Vazquez have told her that the idea of booking a rainbow session can be almost too emotional a thing to consider, she said.
“I got a couple of messages saying, ‘Aren’t your sessions just pictures of my dying dog? Isn’t that a bit sad? “” she said. “And I just want to say that [Rainbow Sessions] is to capture all the smiles and laughs and hugs and everything. This is to close people off and commemorate favorite details on [their pet]like their tiny little paws or their big paws or their little itchy noses or whatever. It’s a way to keep them close even when they’re gone. It honestly shows the love people have for the most loyal best friends people can have on this Earth. “
Vazquez’s love for dogs – especially her own dog, Ohana, a mix of German Shepherd and Pit Bull – inspired her to become a certified dog trainer and freelance dog massage therapist. She is also working to become certified as a canine nutritionist, she said.
“[Ohana] is the best dog ever, but he has a lot of behavioral issues. He is afraid of everything. He’ll bark at anything that moves, “said Vazquez.” I’ve always had a passion and love for dogs and animals in general, and I really wanted to help him. … It’s kind of snowballs from there. “
Vazquez said that about two years ago she started to feel unwell and would pass out randomly. She said it was later discovered that she had several undiagnosed disabilities, some of which were neurological in nature. She went from being able to hike for miles to not being able to hold a 9 to 5 job, she said.
“Once I got sick I took the dog industry even further because I was able to help other people who were suffering from what I was,” said Vazquez.
Vazquez created an Instagram account for Ohana, and she uses the social media platform to educate others about disabilities and mental health issues, both in pets and in people. Ohana’s Instagram account currently has over 1,700 followers.
“He’s basically my inspiration for everything,” Vazquez said.
For more information about Rainbow Sessions or any of the other services it offers, visit Vazquez’s Facebook page, website or email her.
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