Mary Shannon Johnstone. Photographer. Hero. North Carolina.
“In North Carolina alone, the state in which I live, every year over 250,000 dogs and cats have to be euthanized because there is no place to put them. That is almost 700 animals every day, which I find shocking and heartbreaking. Although heroic efforts are made daily by animal control officers, shelter employees, veterinarians, and volunteers, they are faced with a Sisyphean task. This series explores the animals and aftermath of this epidemic, focusing on what remains when there are no regulations on breeding, spaying or neutering.”— Mary Shannon Johnstone
Mary Shannon Johnstone received her BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and MFA in photography from RIT. She has spent the last three years photographing at a state owned animal shelter that takes in 40 new animals a day. Breeding Ignorance is her series on the everyday shelter life of animals awaiting adoption and euthanasia in hopes of bringing change to this issue. Johnstone currently owns six rescue animals and volunteers her time at the Wake County Animal Center and the Ruin Creek Animal Protection Society in N.Carolina, which are very much in need of donations: