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Photographing Your Dog – Three Simple Rules

by on January 22, 2014 - Leave a Comment

Photographing Your Dog is not as tough as you might think

For photographing your dog, you don’t need a fancy camera to get a great shot. Most digital or phone cameras in today’s market offer great resolution for both wYou don’t need a professional camera eb and print, making photographing dogs pretty simple. Here’s 3 things to keep in mind:

Photographing your dog: Bulldog puppy

To get this shot, a person stood by the photographer to get this dog’s attention

Rule #1 – Shoot your dogs photo in settings where light is above or behind you.

An auto setting on your camera will take care of the exposure and shutter speed needed for the environment when photographing your dog. The key is to keep direct light – either from the sun or indoor lights – above or all around your dog. Photographing with a light source from behind your dog will result in a very dark, shadowy image. Shooting with a light source on either side of your dog can create a dramatic effect, but be careful of the heavy shadows that this technique casts. For optimal results, photograph your dog when light surrounds, or is directly above for the best results.

Rule #2 – Find a setting that compliments, not distracts, from your dog.

You will lose a your dog in a setting that has many items of similar size around them, so avoid props or busy backgrounds unless they are simple or similar in color/tone. For example a patch of pumpkins, even though small, is not too busy because they are all similar in color and size, thus presenting a nice backdrop for your photograph. However the center of the living room floor – with couch legs, toys, lamp bases and rugs can be distracting and will take the focus away from your dog.

When choosing your backdrop, look for something that allows you to place your dog in the center of your setting. As the photo at right illustrates, this puppy is in front of his home and in the center of the entrance, illustrating how good balance can move the eye away from the surroundings and onto the subject. Also note the dogs collar color and the door – this red dog collar and leash ties in beautifully with the red door, which leads us to the next rule:

Post: Photographing your dog - golden retriever

Mercer, one of our 2013 photo contest winners, wearing our Irish National Plaid collar.

Rule #3 – Choose settings and colors that compliment your dogs coat color.

This is a bit more tricky, but think of color in terms of cool and warm. It’s much like finding a dog collar that compliments your dogs coat. If your dog has a cool coat color like white or grey, think warm colors like pink, red or brown. If your dog has a warm coat color like brown or red, then blues, greens and violet will contrast nicely. For those that are lucky enough to have a black dog, then almost any setting or dog collar color will work.

Lastly, be patient when photographing your dog, and take lots of shots. It took us over 30 shots to get that beautiful image of Ike. The more you shoot, the more your chances increase of getting the perfect shot of your dog. And when you get it, be sure to post a link to it here!

This post originally appeared on The Artful Canine’s Blog Site. If you’re not reading this via email or RSS feed from The Artful Canine’s Blog Site, it may have been stolen.

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