Photos courtesy of Brian Batista
Much like tattoos, our animal friends give us something that lasts a lifetime.
In a photo project called "Tattoos & Rescues," Nashville-based photographer Brian Batista focuses his lens on tattooed people and their beloved rescue animals in hopes of combating the stigmas that both groups face.
Just as rescue animals that have experienced trauma or abuse are generally considered more difficult to adopt out, it isn't uncommon for people with tattoos to face unfair judgment of their character or even job discrimination. Batista explains:
In the photo above, we see a tiny pitbull cradled in the arms of rescuer Richard Burgess, whose knuckles are tattooed with the phrase, "Save Them." The puppy, now named Major's Miracle (or just "Major" for short), was living in a foster situation when another dog in the household attacked him. Major survived, but the attack left him with some serious damage to his sinuses that required emergency surgery and a lot of post-op care.
As evidenced in the photo below, his journey to recovery is clearly in good hands. You can read the whole story over at Batista's blog (be warned, there are graphic photos of Major's fresh injuries), and be sure to follow the resilient pup on Facebook.
While most of the animals featured in the project are pitbulls, Batista hopes to expand the scope of the project to other rescue animals — including other dog breeds, cats, horses, snakes and more.
" 'Tattoos & Rescues' is a labor of love for me because these stories need to be told," Batista explains. "You will never hear how bad a situation is from a manager; you will hear it from the people in the trenches doing the work."
The project is a work in progress, so visit Batista's website if you're interested in being featured with your rescue animal. In the meantime, continue below to see more portraits of the bond between tattooed people and their rescues.
Steffan and Chesty
Jeremy and Kenithe with Mathilda
Ami and Dexter
Steve and Lilly
Charlie and Django
Heather and Diesel
Catfish, Erin and Handsome Hank
Vicki and Sarge
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