7th September 2011 Jimbo

Pet PhotographyToday I am all alone in the studio with no one to go lunch with. Everyone is out doing something and my wife is having her hair done. BIG NOTE TO SELF – dont forget to comment on hair later. So decided to buy a sandwich to eat at a nearby beach with my boy, well he’s my dog but I call him my boy.

Took the camera along to take a picture of my boy, Jimbo and instantly remembered why he is so difficult to take a picture of. He is absolutely jet black.  The light has to be just right with this boy or you just get a black ball of featureless fluff. To make matters worse his wool has grown over his eyes and so second BIG NOTE TO SELF- Take the photo again a few weeks after his next hair cut.

Here are some tips on Pet Photography …

  1. Think about the background first. As silly as it sounds you can take a great picture of a pet in the studio with plain or studio background. Furthermore the light is always perfect in the studio.  For outdoor photos of a dog, have a think about where you walk him or her as the photo will be more meaningful to you.
  2. Hardest colour pets to photographs are jet black or brilliant white so consider the lighting more carefully with these extremes. For jet black pets have the sun or light source front lit or broad lit meaning the sun or light should be either behind the camera or on the same side of the pet as seen from the camera. This will ensure as much light falls on the subject as the background. For brilliant white pets then consider back lighting or short lighting meaning the sun or light should be either in front of the camera or on the opposite side of the pet as seen from the camera. Let the light dictate the pose! Always shoot in RAW not JPG to enable you to bring some texture and colour back for the final print as what can look OK on screen may not print well if the tonal range is so extreme.
  3. For dogs you can time the photo to coincide with grooming and trims. My Jimbo is best shot a few weeks after a trim.
  4. Take treats in your pocket. Its always amazing what pets will do for treats.
  5. For dogs take him or her off the lead, they are not about to run away when there is treats to be had.
  6. Allow enough time for the shoot. They say never work with Animals or Children for a reason. So have patience and allow double the time you will think it is going to take.

Tech Stuff
Canon G11
1/500 sec
ISO 200
Dogs wool lightened up a bit in Photoshop
location mine and Jimbo’s fav walking location in Brighton, Queensland, Australia.

Pet Photography


show hide 5 comments

Canon Camera Deals Love it and would love to feature you on our web site. Ok by you?

Paul Copsey Sure, as it says at the bottom of the page, you dont need permission to link to any of my pages. Please dont copy text or photos without my written permission though. Thanks Paul

baobao897 very good publish, i actually adore this website, carry on it

Brandy Ahhh cute … i want one … then I want to be able to take a nice picture of him

Jenay Hey, I never knew about the light for my dog photos. Kudos to you!

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