"Goats and sheep have served us from the earliest of times. They have walked the world with us. By paying attention, we honor the musings of the sheep and the jests of the goats. And so these pictures make a kind of meditation on our earthly brother- and sisterhood. When we draw a sharp line dividing humans from the rest of life, we make the world a smaller place—for ourselves. Why on earth would we want to do that?” – Kevin Horan
Goats and Sheep: A Portrait Farm is a beautiful selection of images by American Portraiture photographer Kevin Horan. When Horan moved from Chicago to rural Whidbey Island in the state of Washington, he discovered a local farm full with gregarious goats and sheep. They would often visit his home multiple times a week. He wanted to photograph these animals in a way that captured their individualistic personalities—similar to how we'd capture humans on camera.
So Horan photographed his new neighbors (the goats and sheep) as though they were privileged aristocratic men and women coming for a portrait. He built a small studio on his farm and waited patiently for the sitter to strike a pose. Each animal showcases an unique personality with a variety of gestures and expressions.
This book also features an essay by the writer Elena Passarello in which she asks us to imagine the evolution of the flora and fauna of our earth after it was smashed to pieces by an asteroid 66 million years ago. Regarding the animals pictured in this book and their appeal to humans, she writes: “Sheep and goats are perhaps the first species that you willfully domesticate, as the omnipresent wolf-cum-dogs just started crashing your parties thousands of years beforehand. But from the moment you reconnect onward, in the eleven thousand years that roll toward our present day, you and sheep and goats remain utterly inseparable.”
Kevin Horan explains his process to The Daily Beast. For more information, click here.