Photographer Theron Humphrey has done what many of us only dream of doing. Following a breakup and the loss of his grandfather, he quit his lucrative day job and rescued an adorable dog on Petfinder. Humphrey soon resolved to hit the road with his new best friend, setting out to visit all 50 states in 365 days for a project called This Wild Idea. Along the way, he also started working on Maddie on Things: A Super Serious Project about Dogs and Physics, a gorgeous hardcover from Chronicle Books with over a hundred fascinating photos of Humphrey's beloved Coonhound, Maddie.
From mailboxes and tree stumps to tractors and fences, it seems Maddie will climb anything if it only means making her owner happy. (And of course, let's not forget the treats.) Whether it's an old satellite dish, a rusted gas pump, or an oversized green dinosaur, Maddie's graceful nature and rare patience make her the ideal subject in this unique photo series that's equal parts old-fashioned American travelogue and quirky coffee-table tome. (See HuffPost's coverage of the project before the book.)
Humphrey writes: "Maddie taught me that I should wake up every morning and be grateful. She taught me that committing to something and sticking to it is how we grow. But most of all, she taught me that standing on things, everyday objects, can be incredible. She's my best friend and I wouldn't trade our time together for anything."
Read more about Humphrey's related project, Why We Rescue, and visit The Maddie Tour to see when you can meet this incredible dog. But if you missed her, no biggie -- there's still the book; check out a few images and the video below.
"I wanted to point at something I loved and say, 'I made that.' That's the story I wanted to tell my kids one day. What I didn't realize was how important a coonhound named Maddie would be to my adventure." - Theron Humphrey
"This was the beginning of Maddie on things, or at least me pointing my camera her way. Looking back now I remember all the details that are outside the edges of the photo. That afternoon I was helping a friend move his motorcycle when I saw this light shining between the houses. I ran over with Maddie and put her in the middle of that light, asked her to stay, and she just looked at me." - Theron Humphrey
"When I took this image I still hadn’t thought much about putting Maddie on things. The idea and project evolved and grew organically over time. But I do remember thinking that I would want to look back and remember what my truck and companion looked like in 30 years. Sort of how old photographs of your parents' first cars feel." - Theron Humphrey
"Thinking back on it now, it’s hard to remember my life before traveling, before Maddie. My routine life in the corporate world was the life I lived; it was the life that brought me here. We all live our own unique stories and come from unique parents. We all walk different paths and have our own history. My story has led me here, writing... about this wonderful dog that flipped my world." - Theron Humphrey
Maddie on Things: A Super Serious Project about Dogs and Physics by Theron Humphrey, published by Chronicle Books. 160 pp; 120 color photographs. Hardcover, $15.95.
(Originally posted on Pop Curious. All photos courtesy Chronicle Books and Theron Humphrey.)
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