Archive for October, 2015



Someone dear to me has wished for a photo like this for years, so today I went to get it. It cost me $40 in entry fees, 3 hours of screaming kids on school holidays, being jostled by dozens of people, having to hear “The jellyfish are changing colour!” over and over again (um no, it’s the spotlight that’s changing colour – the jellyfish are white, sigh), and shooting 2000+ photos to get just a few in focus. But it was worth it.

For something that doesn’t have eyes, ears, a nose, a spine, a head, a brain or a heart … jellyfish sure are perfect examples of nature’s simplistic creativity and beauty.

Captured using the 24-70mm f2.8 VC Tamron Australia lens.



Small human

Sometimes pooches bring their small humans to the studio with them and they often sit for a few photos as well. This small human came with a matching one – yup, a pair of adorable baby twins! I’ve only posted one photo (with permission from their kind Mum) because they both looked identical. So imagine this cuteness multiplied to two! I find photographing babies similar to puppies – fast and bouncy, only with less fur and wearing clothes.



Spider Pro Dual Camera System

“Using the Spider Pro Dual Camera System has been a game-changer, a back-saver and a quick-shot-maker for me.”
Alex Cearns

Am honoured to join the Spider Holster family as their newest global ambassador, and to share the benefit of this must-have piece of camera kit with fellow photographers, enthusiasts and professionals alike. The unique design prevents camera swing and ensures lenses face backwards when kneeling down – so they don’t hit the ground.

Want to save wear and tear on your body when you shoot? Order online now and use the code Alex2015 to receive 15% off your total, or buy in store at reputable retailers like Team Digital.

Watch this space for more info on the innovative Spider Holster.

Photo by Erica Serena Photographer



Australian of the Year Awards 2016

Two kind, anonymous people took the time to do this. Feel out of my league, but am humbled to be thought of in this way by my nominators. xxx

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These adorable furry butts are Emmylou and Polly who, along with their four other siblings (two sisters and two brothers), were saved from being drowned and then taken in by CJ Animal Rescue as 10 day old pups. They pups went to dedicated foster carers, who hand raised them all with lots of love, and they are now thriving 9 week olds.

Believed to be Border Collie x’s, Emmylou is the more adventurous of the two, while Polly loves human cuddles and will snuggle into your neck. Both girls are well socialised and their ideal home will have a male, energetic dog to play with and a family who will commit to their training and socialization, as they are both incredibly smart and inquisitive.

Expressions of interest to adopt either Emmylou or Polly are now open and they will be ready for their new homes in approx 2 weeks. To register your interest, or for further information please text Edi on 0430 542 882 or contact Cj’s Animal rescue to enquire about their sweet siblings.




Had loads of fun today on Studio 10, doing a live studio shoot on national television with adorable rescue animals from the Sydney Dogs and Cats Home. Squeak the 4 month old kelpie x stole the show. Someone get in quick and adopt this playful bundle of joy!

View the segment at…/…/1-oct–tips-on-the-perfect-pet-pic

Now, I might have made up something about flight or fight with rabbits (the word I wanted was ‘freeze’, so I wasn’t too far off!) but in the interests of time I had to press on … and give Squeak more well deserved treats. Overall it was a great experience and was so wonderful to meet another rescue group really making a difference.

Big thanks to PETstock for their ongoing support of rescue organisations (and to Nathan for animal wrangling), and to my trusted lens company Tamron Australia (especially Brendan for his live link expertise.) And of course, Sarah, Ita, Jess, James and the entire Studio 10 crew for making us all so welcome and for helping promote animals needing forever homes.





Yesterday in the studio we had an incident requiring the filing of an official report. In the interests of public transparency we thought we should make it public, and you can read all the dramatic details below. Do you think the punishment fits the crime?

ACTION: Assault on dog by cat
OFFENDER: Macy Fatteyboombar, Moggy, 4 years
VICTIM: Pip The Black Beetle, Kelpie x Greyhound, 3 years
WITNESSES: Alex Cearns and Debora Brown

DETAILS: The offender and the victim are non-biological ‘sisters’ who reside in the same dwelling. Their general relationship has been described as friendly and no prior incidents have been reported.

At 3pm on Sunday 27th September, 2015, the offender and the victim were participating in a photo shoot together at Houndstooth Studio. They have previously had similar photo sessions without incident and each shoot is carefully supervised by the photographer and an experienced animal wrangler. The offender has no history of violent behaviour.

The offender and the victim were seated side by side on a large couch and happily had several photographs taken. Without provocation, the offender raised her front left paw and struck the victim to the right temple, causing the victim to close her eye in fright.

The offender was immediately removed from the photo session and the victim was assessed. Her injuries consisted of hurt feelings and shock. A full recovery was made in a matter of minutes when the victim found a ball and began to play.

Photographic evidence of the assault was produced. Image A shows the offender and the victim seconds before the attack. Image B shows the attack.

Given the offender does not have a record of violence, a verbal warning was issued and a 4 week ban from the studio was implemented.




THE STUNNING SIX! Whippie, Zeb, Ollie, Bridie, Gillie and Sam nail their group shot.

The key to this photo was TEAM WORK (enlisting the help of three fabulous pooch wranglers), PRE SHOOTS (in the weeks prior, the dogs each had a photo shoot in pairs), PATIENCE (repeating the same thing over and over again) and TIMING (shooting fast when that perfect spilt second presented itself.) As much as I like a bit of retouching here and there, when all of the aforementioned things are combined and come together, there’s such an authentic relationship between all of the subjects.

Love these gorgeous fur kids and so thrilled we got a shot like this for their humans, Sciona and Fiona.



2 year old Labrador, Harley and 2 year old Labradoodle, Winnie

Sue says “When Harley was a puppy, he was diagnosed with severe hip dysplasia and was given back to his breeder, who then put him up for adoption. Due to his condition, he was not for sale as they wanted to find the fight fit for him in his new home to ensure he received proper care. We saw him online and fell in love with him, and decided he had to join our family. When we adopted him, we knew there would be ongoing treatment costs and that the sad reality was he may not live a full life due to his hip issues.

When our beloved dog Lucy was tragically hit by a car, Winnie came into our lives. We call Wicked Winnie as she is too smart for her own good. On the other hand, Harley is like the perfect dog, which makes Winnie even look naughtier, LOL!

The first day Harley came home, he pushed Winnie into the pool. Then, job done, he just jumped in and started swimming around and thought he was in heaven. He actually thinks the pool is his personal bath.

Winnie loves the park – it’s her cool place where she likes to hang out. She knows every person and every dog and greets them all and then runs off into the river. Even if it’s freezing and raining, away she goes, leaving us with a wet soggy, but happy, dog.”

Harley & Winnie



Staffies, Minnie (2 years of age) and Ollie (12+ years of age)

Emma says “We had a 14 year old Staffy, Jacque who was the glue of our family.  Mum and Dad and three adult children shared him as much as they could. He would adapt to wherever you went, which made us love Staffys for life. When he passed away, we missed him greatly, especially Mum and Dad who had made some enquires about rescuing Staffys.  One of the places Mum called was Staffy And Bully Breed Rescue Inc. who rang Mum back and asked if we could foster an older staffy for a few weeks, as he had hours to get out of the pound.

Without hesitation and sight unseen, we said yes and so arrived Ollie. He looked like the ghost who walked. Ollies journey was appalling. He was terribly skinny and at least 10 kgs underweight, had no muscle tone, had a broken tail, a hairless scar from bites, broken ribs, ears compacted with mites and a lower torso covered in skin tags. He was rough and unsocialised with other dogs, but with us he was lovely. We saw right away that he had a good soul and he reminded us of our beloved Jacque and looked a bit like him.

Within days we phoned SABBR and said we wanted him to stay with us forever, then panicked when they said they would need to do a home visit, and check our fences, etc. What if they rejected us? As it was we passed with flying colours and Ollie finally found his safe place.

I put notes in letterboxes of people I knew who had dogs who would understand Ollie’s needs, asking to meet them one on one in the park at off peak times. When he was comfortable with this handful of dogs he joined the afternoon ‘party at the park’ group. We got him into a strong routine and it took him nearly a year to be good at the park and now he’s one of the first to welcome a new dog to the Park Posse. He is amazing off lead!

Ollie lays out the front of my house and doesn’t go anywhere. You can teach an old dog new tricks and he has totally changed from anxious roughie to a ‘Latte Sipping Staffy’, frequenting the Leederville, Mt Hawthorn and North Perth cafes. He’s socialised and loves his park mates. Ollie has had his skin tags removed, built muscle and even the hairless scar isn’t visible but even if he hadn’t, we would love him for his old soul.

Ollie who hated the hose, laundry and bathroom now will sleep in the boat going up the river. especially if you cover him snugly in a towel to stop the flies from annoying him.

Unexpectedly I lost my Dad who used to say if we teased him (as you do) “Ollies my only friend”. It was the worst time in our family’s life and Ollie knew. He sat by mums side in a way he hadn’t before, with his head resting near her leg. Ollie hates being enclosed in a hug but he knew. For two weeks I didn’t sleep and just laid on the carpet with my arm over Ollie playing with his ears through the longest nights, and he let me. He knew what had happened, I truly believe this. In the end, who rescued who?

Thanks to a group of dedicated volunteers who saw Ollie in the pound and said “Yes” to saving him, assessing him, driving him around, and finding him care, Ollie is alive with living with us. It was such a motivator for me to join their committee and to help other Staffy and Bully Breed Boofas. They are all someone’s Ollie.

About 5 months ago, despite me saying no more fostering until I’d finished renovating, I saw a request for an urgent foster care case. A pregnant little female Staffy was landing in Perth from Broome in an hour, with nowhere to go. I responded and said she can come to me if no one else putts their hand up. Then I raced out and got a baby gate, to use separate Ollie from her, just in case she ended up with me. He wasn’t great with other dogs in his home. Even foster puppies he only liked for about 5 mins at a time.

As it turned our she came to stay. She was a tiny 14kgs and we called her Minnie. And the baby gate wasn’t required. From the moment they met Ollie loved Minnie and she loved Ollie. They even slept in the same bed – yet the puppies were growled at from his position on the couch across the room, if they were on his bed.

Two weeks later it was confirmed she actually had an infected uterus and wasn’t pregnant, she had just been bred too young. She was about 18 months – 2 years old. Then I had to decide if she was going to become a permanent member of our family.

There was a lot if interest in her for adoption and I talked about it with the park people. They made the decision for me – Minnie, despite being a bit of a ball thief, was IN. I was to be banished to the other end of the park if Minnie wasn’t adopted. A lovely tag for Minnie was engraved with my number, and given to me as a gift and they said if I adopted her they would donate money to Staffy and Bully Breed Rescue, a bribe I was happy to accept. The Park Tribe had spoken.

I needed a nudge initially but there are no regrets. Minnie is great fun and a huge personality in her own right. She plays hard despite her size, mixing it with the big dogs. She’s loves cuddles, is wonderful with kids and chickens and thankfully old grey Staffys. My mum, brothers and nephews love her and she brings us all so much joy. Once again Staffys are the family glue.”

Minnie & Ollie