For most of us, getting our dogs to sit still for an Instagram shot requires a pound of bacon and a hefty dose of Pet-Ease. Then there's Q the Pomeranian, Miami's model canine and the subject of the new book A Handbook for Dog Walkers.
Miami-based photographer Tomáš Werner was taking care of Q for a friend when he realized the little Pom was the perfect model. He began snapping shots of Q sitting on and posing with architectural elements around Miami, and eventually the book was born.
"I was in between real jobs and had plenty of free time, so I offered walking my friend's dog," Werner says. "It did not take long before I started photographing him on top of everything. Soon I had a new project."
Little Q loves modeling, Werner says. "Q has an amazing talent for holding a pose. He is always smiling; it almost seems like he is wanting to be photographed."
Q is a 4-year-old with quite a historic legacy: Queen Victoria owned a Pomeranian.
The pup's backdrops and pedestals vary from liquor store signs to dolphin sculptures to neon-hued murals. Each shows a unique side of Miami architecture and decor. The photos were taken via iPhone over a two-month period in 2014.
"The combination of the Florida sun and the hilarious Miami architecture could not be better for my project," Werner adds.
The book even features an afterword by renowned photographer Elliot Erwitt. Erwitt himself has had his own photographic love affair with dogs. The photog's book, Dogs, reveled in his love for man's best friend.
"The publisher sent him some of my photographs and asked if he would write the afterword, and he said yes," Werner says of Erwitt's involvement.
The book's official release date is April 1, but it's available online now at GOSTBooks.com. It costs $22.95 from the London-based publisher. Werner also plans to have some copies available at Books & Books on Lincoln Road after the book's release.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.