Animal Photography

Who Else Wants To Dabble In Pet Photography?

Many pet lovers want professionally done photographs of their pets and they often put these on display for all to see and appreciate. Photographing pets can be quite a challenge because pets usually can’t pick up instructions the way people do. There are also certain limitations in pet photography that makes it more difficult than most other kinds of photography but the rewards are great if you are able to create a really beautiful photograph of your beloved pet.

pet1The number of people who are getting pets increase year after year.  Many of these pet owners go the extra mile just to give everything they can to their beloved pets.  There are even specialized services for pets that span grooming, health care, fashion, and a lot more.  Also included in these specialized services is pet photography.

Many pet lovers want professionally done photographs of their pets and they often put these on display for all to see and appreciate.  Photographing pets can be quite a challenge because pets usually can’t pick up instructions the way people do.  There are also certain limitations in pet photography that makes it more difficult than most other kinds of photography but the rewards are great if you are able to create a really beautiful photograph of your beloved pet.

Capturing the character and essence of a pet not only gives a stunning pet portrait but also priceless memories of pets for pet owners.  When dabbling in pet photography as a hobby or a business, here are certain things you may want top bear in mind.

Have Patience.  To get awesome photographs of a pet, you need to realize that the process calls for a lot of patience.  It would usually take some time to be able to take pictures of the pose or expression from the pet that you have been looking and waiting for.  There may also be times when you don’t have to wait long to get the perfect shot but you must also be prepared to wait and be patient.  Though there may be times when it will get frustrating but those who are patient would eventually reap the rewards.

pet4Timing Is Everything.  Pets also have moods just like humans.  Sometimes they are just too lazy to move around and wouldn’t respond to coaxing.  This is why you need to consider good timing whatever type of shot of a pet you may have in mind.  You should adjust to an animal’s moods instead of forcing it to a pose.  If you want to take a picture of it lying around, you just need to wait for it to get tired.  If you want to capture the image of the pet in a playful mood, wait for it to get up and be in the mood to play.

Try Different Shooting Angles.  In most kinds of photographs of living creatures, be it pets or humans, the most important aspect is the eyes of the subject.  By getting down to the eye level of a pet, you can dramatically capture its character and soul.  You can also try other angles by shooting down from above while standing on a chair to create unique and effective photographs.  It would also be wise to experiment with different angles and just keep the pet’s eye always in mind.

Shoot As Much As You Can.  Just like in most kinds of photography, it is better to take as many pictures as you can because it is way better to use up your camera’s memory space rather than missing the perfect shot.  Besides, with digital cameras, you need worry about wastage in film and all you need to worry about is the memory space of your camera.  Since memory cards and memory sticks are much more affordable nowadays, you ca even afford not to worry about memory spaces as you can just transfer your shots to a computer right after the shoot or just delete the ones that you do not like.

By taking as many pictures as you can, you can capture a pet at its best whatever its moods are. Also, if you shoot continuously, you can make the pet get used to the sound of the camera.  This way, it can get more relaxed with you around making clicking sounds with your camera.  You are also in the better position to capture candid shots in between your pet’s formal posed if you are shooting continuously.  By doing so, you may be surprised at some of the shots you were able to capture when you review them.

Manipulating Situations.  If you want a really special and unique pet portrait, you can try bringing it to a nicer environment.  For example, you can bring the pet to the beach where you can throw it into the water or to the field where you can allow it to romp and run freely.  You can also try to take some shots at the park, or when you jog, or when doing something that both you and your pet find enjoyable.  A nice, relaxed, and laidback environment can give you an opportunity to take awesome random shots of your pet.

Using Toys And Treats.  The use of pet toys and treats to stimulate a pet can be quite tricky.  There are two possible scenarios here.  One scenario is that by using toys and treats, you can stimulate a pet in order for you to make a more appealing shot and create more striking and intense images.  On the other hand, the other scenario would be getting the pet over-stimulated and they could be harder to work with when it is in the state of over-stimulation.  If you are taking the photograph of other people’s pet, talk first with its owner and observe the pet under both circumstances and see which works best.

Catching The Action.  Instead of the generic and tamed setup, many pet owners want to have photos of their pets in action. Animals are supposed to be free to express themselves and they are best to look at when they are feeling carefree and gay.  For you to be able to get a good shot of a pet in action and in a jolly mood, you would need to set it to an active and playful mood.  You can try to initiate some kind of a game with it.  You can also give it its favorite food or favorite toy to stimulate it and keep its mood up.  You can try doing a lot of things to get the pet up and get it on with what you are planning to do.  For really interesting shots, you can get the pet do some tricks.

Some Thoughts On Composition.  There could be times when you could be very busy trying to capture a pet’s perfect expression or trying to make an interesting shot that considerations about the background is overlooked or forgotten.  The rules of good composition must always be on the mind of every photographer and you can easily make a visual check on your camera’s viewfinder.  Is the background cluttered or not? Are you using the rule of thirds? How much depth of field do you want for your picture?  Have you checked whether the background complements your subject?

If you are taking pictures of a black dog, for example, it may not be wise to shoot it with a dark background.  Check whether your location is working for you or not.  If not, consider moving to the other side or completely change locations.  This could make a big difference in the outcome of your shot and you could get either an ordinary shot or a really stunning portrait of the subject.

..hope you’ve enjoyed this. Go to this link if you want to learn more on pet photography.

Ray Baker