The holidays are a great time to take photos of your dog, chronicling his growth over the previous year. Even if you have a point and shoot camera, taking pictures of dogs can be tricky. Unlike their owners, pets don’t know what we are asking of them – posing for the camera is generally not in their everyday repertoire (have you ever seen a dog selfie)? They get fidgety and restless
Here are some tips to help you create some great shots from Antoine Khater at All Day I Dream about Photography.
- Take the photos outside whenever possible. The flash can cause red eye and scare your dog. If you want to take a picture indoors by your holiday tree, light from an outside window is best. If your pet is light colored, white fur in particular will look washed out with a flash.
- Get down on your pet’s level so he feels more comfortable and you can get a more natural shot. Sit on the floor or lie on your belly and remember to shoot from his eye level or below. See the world as he sees it. An uncluttered background with neutral colors is ideal because it isn’t too distracting.
- Capture your pet’s character and uniqueness. Does your dog have a favorite bone? A favorite place outside? A special way he stands when he’s happy? Remember, you’re making memories, so catch him when he’s happy.
- Want to have a professional photo taken? Is your dog a morning dog or an evening dog? Schedule a time when he’s at his best.
- Be patient. It may take some trial and error to get a good shot. Experiment. Try different angles, approaches and composition.
Feeding an animal first is always a good idea if shooting portraits as it leaves them relaxed. Have fun with it. If you’re having fun, your dog will too! It may take 25 pictures to get one good one, but it will be worth it!
Jeri Wagner is a canine behavioral therapist and master trainer. Jeri uses a natural training system leveraging the same communication methods – body language and voice control – that dogs follow as part of their instinctive pack mentality. Training takes place in the home where the problems generally occur. Jeri trains in western Montgomery county and northern Chester County. For more information, call 1-877-500 BARK (2275) or visit www.barkbusters.com.
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