Dog owners love to take photos of their dogs just as much as mothers enjoy taking photos of their children. Just look at how many photos of dogs are on the internet. Millions! But many dog owners struggle with capturing a good photo of their pets. As a dog photographer, I know how difficult it can be to get the perfect photo of your dog. I work very hard to capture good photos of my dogs. It is not easy, but since I love photography and dogs I enjoy the work. Over the years I have learned what works for me and what doesn’t.
Don’t over use the flash
I never use flash when I photograph my dogs. They hate the bright flash, and I hate how it turns their eyes yellow or red in the photograph. My dogs have great eyes, why would I want to replace them with laser eyes?
There are photographers who use flash while taking dog photos but point it away from the animal to keep the eyes natural. That technique is great to capture crisp, clear photos in low light, but I prefer to avoid flash all together.
If I am in low light, I will either adjust the settings on my camera to allow more light in through the lens or I will use my tripod. If you don’t have a tripod, you can use any surface to steady your camera. At times I have used a stack of books. Anything to avoid flash, I will do it.
Get down to your dog’s level
Most of the photos I take of my dogs are captured while I’m kneeling on one knee or lying flat on my belly. Imagine me lying flat on the ground, it is a funny sight. But I will do it to capture a good photo. When you are eye level, the photograph of your dog becomes more engaging to viewers. The personality and emotion pop out more.
Capture your dog’s personality
I enjoy having my dogs pose for photos because I like being creative and artsy. But my favorite photos of my pack are taken when they are being themselves. I always tell people, “The best photos of dogs, are dogs being dogs.”
So, if your dog enjoys running in the yard or napping in the sun, capture it! Those are the photos you’ll want to have for memories in a photo album.
This is key because dogs aren’t humans. You can’t tell your dog to sit still like a statue for five minutes or to stretch when you say so. I mean, if your dog is perfectly trained and knows lots of tricks then… maybe. But most dogs turn their heads and move around while you are trying to capture a shot. So, take your time and avoid getting angry. If photography is a positive experience for you, it will be positive for your dog too.
Do I really have to explain it?