Today we want to discover Emma and Oliver , a perfect duo that has us in love. We discovered her thanks to her Instagram profile in her white apartment with high walls that transmits calm and tranquility.
You define yourself as a photographer, video artist and storyteller. How would you define Oliver?
Whenever I am asked this question, it is very difficult for me to answer in one line, since Oliver is many things—and different things—at different times in my life. But if I try to define it in one sentence, it would be this: “Oliver is my family, my emotional refuge, my creative engine and my desire to be good to myself and others”.
How did you end up on Instagram telling us about your day to day life with Oliver?
At first I used Instagram as a platform to share my creative photos and the occasional video. Over time, I realized that not only were the photographs in which Oliver appeared more attractive, but also those in which he recreated scenes from our day to day. In a social network where posturing is abused, I felt a great need to be real and that's how I changed the course of my profile until it became my own personal therapy. Of course, always from a creative point of view (after all, I'm still a photographer), I recreate moments that have passed, or are part of my day-to-day life with Oliver, and I share them in order to empathize, learn or, just have a laugh. And… boy am I having fun!
What would you recommend to someone starting an Instagram profile with their pet?
Be authentic. And the only way to be is by being yourself. Let yourself be inspired, but do not copy other profiles. Experiment, make mistakes and, if necessary, delete your profile and create it again. Trust me, I did it 3 times. Respect yourself, that is, feel comfortable with what you expose in the profile, without masks, without fear or prejudice. And above all, respect your furry companion. The key to a beautiful, healthy and authentic account is to do it with love and respect. If we stop having fun together in it, it no longer makes sense for us to continue.
Let's talk about your book, how did the need to create something so intimate arise? Was it difficult for you to expose yourself in words?
The need arose in the same way as with my Instagram account. For many years I had pretended to be different people in order to adjust to the canons, desires and needs of others. I pretended to be happy and that everything was fine with me, while inside I built a dark room full of monsters that gradually consumed me to the point that wallowing in my sorrow was easier than doing something about it.
It took me a long time to realize that I was the only one responsible for my own happiness and that, to achieve it, I had to let go of those monsters and show myself to the world as it was. It was ironic to discover that by acknowledging my weaknesses, fears, and insecurities out loud, I gained self-esteem. And, as a consequence, with that self-esteem, I became strong and brave enough to write “ From my inside ”. Still , and answering your question, yes. It was difficult for me to expose myself, since it is not the same to write what you feel in a diary or tell it to a friend over coffee. But I owed it to myself after so many years and… it feels great!
Do you recommend us a book?
I will always recommend “ Verónika decides to die” by Paulo Coelho. It's my favorite book! But regardless of how gore the title may sound, it is a revealing book. No spoilers : it's about a girl ( Verónika ) who is admitted to a sanatorium after trying to commit suicide and it is there, during her stay, that she discovers that the only way to find our true self is by going a little crazy.
Have we heard anything of a volunteer rescuing dogs?, tell us more
In my third year in Prague, I became obsessed with volunteering with dogs. I wanted to do something good, selfless, that was far from my comfort zone and from which I could learn something revealing and then remember the rest of my life. So, in 2018, I left my job, my apartment, I put my relationship with El Belga on hold and, with some savings and a suitcase full of old clothes, I went to the island of Koh Lanta , in Thailand.
For 4 months I worked as a photographer at Lanta Animal Welfare ( LAW ), an animal rescue center, where I was in charge of "giving a voice" to the dogs and cats that arrived at the center in order to promote their adoption or get enough financial help. to help them. We got Brave a wheelchair, after he lost both hind legs in a car hit; that Peru fight his cancer and finally come out of isolation in section C; and that the puppies we rescued from under a dilapidated building had the necessary measurements to grow up healthy and strong.
Have you incorporated any vegan food routine with Oliver?
From the age of 11 months, Oliver eats BARF . Not very vegan, no. I try to provide you with the most natural diet possible according to your conditions and needs. Although from time to time there are some homemade snacks that we make at home based on fruits and vegetables with which they smack their noses too.
It's been a while since you got a Gala tour pack for Oliver, tell us about your experience in Prague with him .
I'm lovin 'it! I love the minimalist design, the material and the beige color so it goes with… everything in my life, haha ! He was looking for a harness and leash that Oliver could wear to meet-ups with friends or to dinner at one of the hundreds of “ dog - friendly ” restaurants in Prague. Oliver looks adorable, clean and presentable in it and I get to give his other “off-road” harness a break for when he's making kibble in the park or taking to chasing ducks down the Vltava River.
Any favorite places in Prague with pets?
A lot of.
Prague has no limits when it comes to taking your dog. Almost the entire city, including cafes, restaurants, public transport and the castle itself, are “ dog - friendly ”. But if I have to choose a place, this would be Petřín Hill. A refuge of trees and vegetation in the middle of the city where Oliver can run loose while I enjoy disconnecting from the noise and crowds that we leave behind.
Another place that I recommend is the old district of Malá Strana . Best time? Early in the morning. So you can enjoy walking alone through the streets of colorful and picturesque facades next to the Charles Bridge without people and in silence.
In this same neighborhood they have recently opened a cafeteria called Haf Park which is also a store, sells BARF food and serves as a day care center.
You know that we are working to launch new 100% sustainable products for Cafide , what would you like the next novelty to be?
If you would launch a set of suitcases and toiletry bags to carry "the luggage" of our dogs when we go on a trip, I would be the first to buy it.
For us, the goal of being a brand for activist dogs is a motto that we have pursued since day one. What has been your most activist action this year?
I have reduced (even more) my consumption of meat to the point that I have not bought it for months and hardly feel the need to eat it.
Thank you very much for your time and for letting us discover more about Oliver and your environment. See you on the networks and remember: Stay Pawsitive .