If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen that at the start of the year I made a resolution that I will take more pet portraits of my dogs.
Well, the year has started off well-ish. I took my camera to the park. And scheduled in time to retouch the images, and even do this blog post. But I made a few silly mistakes. I presumed my dogs knew their mother was a photographer and would behave accordingly during their shoot. They didn’t, obviously.
What you should do
There are a number of tips that I share with my clients before a pet portrait session so that we can get the most out of their session. Simple things that make the world of difference like,
A great way to get rid of some of your dogs excess energy is to do something exciting the morning or evening before. Take them for a walk, go to the park, or do a mental enrichment activity.
Food driven dogs are always much easier to manage. If your dog isn’t usually very food driven you can help them be a bit more food driven by skipping feeding them breakfast/dinner and then bringing their food along to the shoot instead.
Another trick that always works is to bring their favourite treats and toys with you and use them to get your dogs attention.
These small things make the world of difference! Having a calmer and more focused dog usually means the difference between just having shots of them tearing around and having a full collection of them running around along with some stunning portraiture.
Do what I say, not what I do
As you can see, my dogs were full of energy after skipping their park visits the two days before. When we did call them towards us, it was a flat out sprint, not a casual trot. And when I did ask them to sit for a few pictures, it was very clear that their attention was elsewhere and I was interrupting their fun.
And so I have adjusted my new years resolution. I mustn’t just take more pictures of my dogs, I must practice what I preach. I must photograph my dogs more often, but treat the shoots as I would like my clients to! Meaning, I shall prep my dogs and myself better.
If you are looking to have some pet portraits done (and listen to what I recommend and don’t do as I do) I would love to hear from you! Send me an email and let’s plan your pet portraits!