Watch CBS News

Burglars Take Cameras, Hard Drives Holding Oakland Photographer's Life Work

OAKLAND (KPIX) -- One large-format camera is almost all that was left behind after thieves broke in to Oakland photographer Jennifer Little's home on Wednesday.

Eight cameras were taken and -- most frustrating of all -- 21 irreplaceable hard drives containing about 70,000 digital photographs.

"I've actually lost about ten years worth of work," Little told KPIX 5. "That's pretty much my entire professional production since I finished graduate school in 2005 and I lost all the work I ever digitized."

Stolen Hard Drives
Jennifer Little shows an example of the hard drives that were stolen from her Oakland home Wednesday. (CBS)

The only pictures saved were about 30 images she took of Southern California's Owens Lake for a book on the battle over water rights.

Little was also working on a book about an indigenous family in southern China.

"I'll probably have to write off the project from China completely because it's so expensive to go there and I've sort of lost all the groundwork documentation that the whole project was based on," Little said.

Little thinks the thieves popped the screen off her bathroom window and climbed inside. Now she's on a mission to get her work back, posting flyers around her neighborhood. She says the hard drives are worthless to a thief but for her, as well as her subjects and the books she still hopes to create, they mean everything.

"I'll pay a reward to get them back, no questions asked," she said.

To contact Jennifer, send e-mail to:


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.