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Erica Polites has been a professional photographer, graphic designer and website designer in California and in South Florida – where she currently resides. For the past 18 years, she has designed and maintained a variety of websites: music artists, motorsports, local businesses, health and wellness nonprofits, medical industry services, home design organizations, international fireworks, and professional individuals. In addition, she has produced, designed and photographed full-color catalogs, created calendars, posters, trading cards and developed complete model portfolios. She has also designed and sold her own line of clothing, taught medical record-charting to nurses, designed marketing materials and started and ran a non-profit organization to benefit our veterans.

She studied fine art, photography, graphic design, typography and website design and has taken coursework and intensive workshops at Moore College of Art in Philadelphia, University of California Irvine, CA, Orange Coast College, Costa Mesa, CA and Cerritos College, Cerritos, CA

Erica has had a deep commitment to animal advocacy throughout her entire life, starting with hamsters as a little girl to currently foster parenting dogs in her home until they are adopted.  Her passion for protecting creatures who cannot say  “no,”  “please don’t hit me,” or “that hurts” intensified after her beloved and loyal black Shepherd mix died in 2011.  Erica felt a strong need to educate people about animals and become an animal advocate as an important and necessary component in stopping animal abuse and neglect. A photographer since she was 15, Erica felt a natural inclination to photograph shelter dogs. She has seen first-hand the lack of protection lawmakers extend to shelter dogs and farm animals. It is her deepest hope that this book will draw attention to these dogs’ beauty, gentle nature and the need to care for those among us with no voice.

portrait of dogs and me

In addition, she loves to cook and bake, lives at her home in Jupiter, FL with her two rescue dogs and always  at least one foster dog (or more) – and she is especially proud of the large amount of dog fur in her home. After all, it wouldn’t be a home without dogs!

Please visit the purchase page to order your copy of Portrait of a Shelter Dog within this site. And we would be delighted to have you “like” her on Facebook (Portrait of a Shelter Dog.)

Erica (just after a several hour photoshoot) with her furry friends (clockwise from left): Izzie (foster, Shepherd mix), Emily (adopted, Chow/Golden Retriever mix), Max (special-needs foster, Boxer/Bull Dog/ Pit Bull mix), and Nellie (adopted, terrier mix)