Connie Collum said she’s been in love with photography since she was 16 years old and has always loved animals.
“I started photographing my own pets, and then I started volunteering for a lot of different rescue groups and shelters to photograph their cats and dogs to get them adopted a little easier,” Collum said. “Sometimes they have a little trouble with their photos.”
The Hoover resident started to get noticed by people in the community for her photos and was asked if she could take pictures of other people’s pets, she said. After four years of success, she decided to pursue her lifelong dream of owning her own photography business and incorporated in 2009, she said.
“I loved meeting every different pet and every different dog,” Collum said. “Seeing the interactions between the owners and their dogs and how much they mean to them and how much they enrich their lives, I just love it.”
Collum went to Auburn University and originally planned to be in veterinary school but decided to take a different route, she said.
“It was kind of a different world in the vet community back then,” Collum said. “It was more of a man’s world, and they didn’t even admit that many women.”
After going through the entire pre-med program, she began to feel it might not be the career for her, she said. The main reason she changed her major was because she didn’t like how people were treating their animals when she was working for a clinic as a part of the university’s pre-med program, she said.
“They just didn’t care that much and wouldn’t follow directions,” Collum said. “I thought that that would be a little frustrating.”
Collum graduated with a major in medical technology and later worked in UAB’s Division of Infectious Diseases for 20 years while still taking pictures of pets for her business. After retiring in 2018, she was finally able to run the photography business full time, she said.
Collum said she photographs all kinds of animals, including cats, bunnies and dogs.
For more information, visit conniecollumphotography.com or call 205-215-9060.