You Can Take Lovable Pictures of Your Pets by Following These 7 Easy Steps
Pets are among the most challenging subjects to photograph. Yes, there are some of them who seem to know how to look awesome on camera. But many pets do not care at all how their photographs will look, even if you cajole them repeatedly or promise them extra treats. They are more interested in simply being themselves, playful and carefree.
So, how can you make a successful photoshoot with pets?
Here are 7 easy steps to create amazing pet photographs:
1. Talk with the pet owner about the best time to do their pet’s photoshoot
You have to consider a pet’s mood if you’re aiming to do either portrait or action photography. If your goal is to capture a pet’s energetic moments, then ask the owner about the time when his pet is playful and active. For portrait-style shots, it may best to time the session after a pet’s nap so that it feels more relaxed. The pet owner is likely to know when the best time is for their pet. But you must be ready, too, for the unexpected, as animals can be very unpredictable. You may have to be patient to achieve your goal.
2. Make a shot list and determine the props you’ll need
With pets, this is especially important, due to an animal’s unpredictable behavior. Planning will make you ready for any circumstances and provide you with more opportunities to achieve your aim.
As you make your shot list, you can also decide if you’ll need any props. When opting to use props like pet costumes, make sure that the animal will be comfortable wearing it.
3. Choose the right lens for your photoshoot
You should likewise consider this ahead of the photo session. Having a telephoto lens for action photography offers a lot of advantages because you do not have to shoot very close to your subject, which may make a pet uncomfortable or even run away. For portrait-style, a macro lens will be perfect to capture emotions through the subject’s eyes and facial expressions. On the other hand, a wide-angle lens will let you capture in detail all those scenes you’ve planned in your shot list. This lens is a great choice when you have a themed photoshoot in mind like Christmas season or Valentine’s Day. Make your background festive or romantic with the right choice of props along with the right lens.
4. Use treats or toys to win over a pet’s full attention
Inquire about your subject’s favorite treats and toys so you can get them ready for the photoshoot. Befriending a pet early will make it easier for you to photograph it at its best moments. Toys can be great props, too, since you can capture a pet’s reaction to its favorite playthings. After every great shot, do not forget to give your subject a reward to encourage its good behavior.
5. Focusing on a pet’s eyes will give you heart-stirring photos
When doing portrait photography, it’s always best to focus on the eyes of the pet you want to feature. The eyes are the mirrors of a living creature’s feelings. Capture the innocence in those eyes, or the glint of mischief, happiness, sadness, or any mix of animal emotions. You will find yourself entranced—the same effect it will have on people who will view your amazing photographs.
6. Take advantage of natural light
Outdoors is the best for pet photography, but it’s important to choose the best hours of the day. Avoid intense sunlight, since it can destroy the results of your effort. Early morning or late afternoon provides the perfect natural light for taking photographs. Just in case you have to do the photoshoot indoors, make sure you’re near a window with adequate natural light coming through. Avoid shadowy areas that can cast dark spots on your photos.
7. Be more creative by taking photos from a pet’s point of view
Discover the animal world through your camera! Lie down, crouch, and see things through a pet’s eyes. You will suddenly have a view of the world that is different from a person’s perspective but nonetheless exciting and invigorating. Feel what the pet is feeling and capture those precious moments that make it alive and thrilled!
Yes, pets are a bit harder to handle than people during a photoshoot. But you surely can expect a fulfilling reward to this pursuit if you have a bucketful of patience, a good dose of diligence in following these seven easy steps, and the determination to have fun!
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At home, I spend my free time learning how to cook various cuisines. Tiramisu, chocolate mousse, and banoffee pie are my favorite desserts. Playing with our dogs, Mushu and Jerusalem, is also a special part of my day. And, of course, I read a lot – almost anything under the sun. But what really makes me feel alive is meeting people from various walks of life and writing about their stories, which echo with the tears and triumph of an unyielding spirit, humanity, and wisdom.