By Mark McConville
HEARTWARMING images have captured babies and their furry friends as human and animal bond from a young age.
The adorable pictures show babies posing with tiny puppies in bed together, kittens poking their heads out from beneath a small duvet and little chicks resting on top of a baby.
Some of the cute photographs even feature the photographer’s own dog, Mustang, who sparked the idea for the project.
London-based photographer Sujata Setia (35), who owns But Natural Photography, started photographing children and their pets after Mustang came into her life two years ago.
“He was a little puppy when we bought him and I felt the urge to capture the special moment he and my daughter shared,” she said.
“Once I started photographing them it almost became an addiction. Soon my clients were asking me to photograph their babies with Mustang and their pets.
“That is when this project came to my mind. I now photograph little babies and their furry friends, wherever I travel in the world.
“I call it magical realism; the innocence and the magic of childhood is what I capture. I feel like every child needs a furry friend.
“There is a lot you can learn from having a furry being in your home but most importantly it keeps the child alive in you. No matter how old you grow and it is that childhood that I project through all my work.”
Sujata, who took the photographs with a Nikon D800, explained the process behind the images and the problems she can run into.
“It is a very detailed process,” she said.
“Safety of both the children and their furry friends is most important. I make sure that the furry babies involved are pets of the family. Parents and an assistant are always by my side to always take care.
“I sometimes wait for hours to let the baby go off to sleep naturally and then literally place their fur buddy around them.
“Appropriate use of natural light helps in creating the dreamy images that you see. I step outdoors at the times of the day when light is soft enough for me to shoot a good image.
“It’s mostly about being patient and being good with babies and animals both. It is important to make sure none of them are stressed out so I need to be very quick with my shots.
“Sometimes my shoot literally takes two minutes and sometimes I have to cancel all of it because the babies and or the animal are not happy being a part of it.”
Sujata is originally from Jaipur, India, and stressed how her work has helped her adapt to a new country.
“My work is a window to the person I am and have become over time,” she said.
“It was born at a time when I was feeling misplaced in a new country trying to seek an identity. I felt removed from the comfort zone of being in my own country with my own people and so my work is all about hope, about the beauty and memories of childhood.
“I always tell my daughter that ‘magic is real, believe in it’ and that is exactly what I showcase through my work – Faith in magic and the magic of childhood.
For more information see http://butnaturalphotography.com/