BOARDMAN, Ohio (WYTV) – Josh and Jess Trolio own Pixel Pop Photography in Boardman, shooting weddings, engagements and other occasions.
But this week’s Hometown Heroes are more than photographers. They are also animal lovers and say they didn’t like what they were seeing happen to animals in the Mahoning Valley.
“We would actually watch a lot of the news and stuff like that around the winter, and we saw a lot of reports of people leaving their dogs out in the cold temperatures and dogs being confiscated by Animal Charity and things like that… We decided to see what we could do to help,” said Josh Trolio.
So, using the talent and tools they had, they did what they could to help animals in the area.
“We set up a weekend where we did free dog portraits in the studio, and basically, people would just come and bring their dogs, and then they would bring a donated item,” Josh said.
Josh said they photographed about 20 or 30 dogs that weekend and managed to collect items to donate to Animal Charity.
The Trolios said that wasn’t enough, however. They wanted to do more.
“We offered to photograph all of their dogs for them, if they needed, just to help to get the word out and everything about them,” he said.
So about once a month, Animal Charity Humane Society brings about 15 to 20 dogs to the Pixel Pop studio for photographs.
Animal Charity Executive Board Vice President Amy Manolio said the photographs have been a major benefit to the animal shelter.
“They capture the dogs’ personalities. They work with them until they get a picture that they like, and it’s just huge for us,” she said.
It can be hectic in the kennel — a cement room with nothing to absorb the sound of the dog’s barking — but the pictures give the dogs a chance to show who they are outside of those walls.
“Their true essence and personality comes out. They get excited to get in the car and get a day out of the kennel,” Manolio said.
The Trolios also foster dogs, and they found a member of their family along the way.
“We fostered a couple of dogs, and Tinkerbell was one that we just ended up keeping afterward,” Josh said. “We loved her. Jess fell in love with her when she was taking her picture in the studio.”
Animal Charity credits the adoption of close to 70 dogs due, in part, to the photos taken by Pixel Pop.