Pets make some of the cutest, funniest and most vibrant photography subjects. However, just as it is when photographing children, it can be very difficult due to their unpredictability. Here are a few practical tips to make your pictorial easy and fun for you and your pet:
1 I Relax and have fun
Nothing is worth doing if it’s not fun. Whether you are photographing indoors or outside, the simple key to relaxed animal portraits is to create an environment where your subject is happy. Equally, if you are anxious, your pet will feel that too!
2 I Don’t forgot the treats
You can use treats to bribe and reward your model throughout the shoot, offer them something that they really like to keep them motivated and to encourage them to cooperate. The reward is up to you, and it can be anything from treats and toys to belly rubs and other forms of affection. Treats can even serve as bait, props, or tools that can help warm up your pet for the camera. Use rewards to make the shoot more fun and rewarding for everyone!
3 I Get on their level
If you get down on your pet’s level, you’ll have a lot of unique perspectives to work with. You’ll also make your pet feel more comfortable. If you are using a smartphone it will be easier for you to take high-quality photos if the camera is closer to your pet.
4 I Focus on the Eyes
They say “eyes are the windows to the soul”, and this is no different for animals. One of the ways animals express emotion and character is through their eyes. Given that we look each other (and animals) in the eyes, focussing on the eyes will help your viewer have an immediate connection to your subject. When you take photos indoors, make sure there’s enough surrounding light to make your pet’s eyes stand out. You can position them close to he window or use white walls as reflectors to create that special glow.
5 I Use Natural Light
Natural light is the most flattering light in all photography genres and also the best option for your pet as it won’t frighten them or cause red-eye in your images (as flashes can). If you are indoors, try to capture your pet next to a large window on a sunny day. If the light is too harsh, use curtains to soften it. If you’re shooting outdoors, overcast days are often best for providing even, diffused lighting. Days filled with sunshine present more challenges - in that case take photos in a shaded area. All the surrounding light will make your pet’s eyes sparkle and give them a flattering glow.
6 I Use Burst Mode to capture motion
Continuous shooting (burst) mode is perfect for taking memorable and hilarious photos of pets. Just like kids, active dogs are unpredictable, which means you won’t be able to compose a shot during your session. Instead of waiting for the perfect moment, take spontaneous images. Burst mode is a handy feature that will help you take lots of pictures within seconds. This way, you’ll get to capture all kinds of angles and expressions while your pet is moving.