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Photographer Captures Daughter's Life with Exotic Animals

25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

Robin Schwartz and her daughter Amelia love animals. More than average pet owners, Robin and Amelia live in a world full of exotic animals. Robin says, “My daughter and I share an affinity with the animal kingdom and we play out our fantasies and explore our eccentricities by creating a cultural space where animals not only co-exist with humans, but also interact as full partners.”

Robin spent a decade, from 2002 to 2012, taking portraits of Amelia with exotic animals – both those in their everyday life and ones they visited at wildlife parks and elsewhere. “The animals in the photographs are living creatures, participants in the dramas that the photographs capture. The world that my daughter and I explore is one where the line between human and animal overlaps or is blurred, where animals are part of our world and humans are part of theirs,” Robin says.

She adds that her photographs are not “documents,” but rather “they are evidence of the invented worlds that we explore and the fables we enact together. Photography gives us the opportunity to access our dreams, to discover the extraordinary.”

Robin’s photos of Amelia and the animals they feel so close to have been described as surreal, and some of them certainly are, but there is also something incredibly real about all of them. They capture an existence in tune with nature, a rarity in the digital age. When you look at Robin’s photos, you can almost smell the dirt and water and mud and feed and poop that goes along with caring for animals, that great musk of the earth I remember from my childhood.

Amelia’s bond with these animals is clearly very personal to her, and these photos provide a window into an intimate, bizarre and beautiful world.

  • Trunk Sniff 1 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Touch, Girls 2 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Pete 3 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Louie 4 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Leopard Sisters, Tribute to Rebecca 5 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Amelia and Amelia 6 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Deer Butt 7 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Shiba, Two Years Later 8 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Reindeer Dance 9 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Dushur Down 10 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Reaching, Girls 11 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Face Rub 12 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Carbon 13 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Great Dane 14 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Mouse 15 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Amelia's World '02-'07" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Tash and Amelia 16 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Breakfast Talk, Rosie 17 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Jacob’s Weekly Bath 18 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Greyhound Hair, Paris 19 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Baby Lorenzo 20 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Flying Hannah, Sleeping Becky, Scaredy Cat Jacob 21 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Miley and Inga’s Blue Eyed Stare 22 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Nifty Likes Amelia 23 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Elijah AKA Pee Pee Boy 24 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

  • Stretch, Deerkill Camp 25 of 25
    25 Amazing Photos of a Little Girl's Intimate Relationship with Exotic Animals

    From "Animal Affinity '08-'12" by Robin Schwartz.

Photo site My Modern Met notes, “If you enjoyed this series, you should also check out Tippi of Africa featuring a young girl who is best friends with African wildlife.” Definitely do! It’s wonderful.

To see all of Robin’s extraordinary work, please visit her website.

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