Cone of Shame: Winnie Au’s Endearing Dog Portraits Will Melt Your Heart

The dreaded “cone of shame” gets an artistic makeover and meaningful purpose in Winnie Au’s endearing dog portraits.

Mention the “cone of shame” to any pet owner and you’ll be met with all sorts of stories about trips to the vet or groomers, and why the contraption was necessary. But in the ongoing personal project by Winnie Au, the Elizabethan collar becomes a work of art and a symbol of hope for dogs in need of surgeries. If you’re an animal lover looking for a unique project with a cause to support, you might want to check this out.

Brooklyn-based Winnie has spent the last two years photographing dogs for her Cone of Shame project to promote rescue dogs and help bring to light their need for medical treatment. She has taken the project to Kickstarter to raise funds for the first print run of the Cone of Shame Notecard Set, the future proceeds of which will go to the Recovery Road Fund of NYC-based no kill shelter Animal Haven.

Winnie worked with stylist Marie-Yan Morvan to design and create cones and backdrops unique to each dog featured in the series. While working with abstract designs and creative inspirations, they made sure that the cones weren’t too heavy and were easy to take on or off. Multiple cones for each dog were also made in order to make sure that the overall concept would work.

The resulting photos are currently exhibited across US and Canada, on the Fence at Photoville, and featured on various websites and in magazines. With the Cone of Shame Notecard Set, you can also have your copies of some of the most adorable portraits from the series. For a pledge of at least $30, backers get 12 5×7 inch notecards printed on 400 gsm uncoated card stock, bound by a wraparound cover and embossed logo.

The project has already been successfully funded but you still have time to show your support before it closes on March 28th. Check out the Kickstarter campaign to find out more and make your pledge.


Photos from the Cone of Shame Kickstarter campaign