More tips to get that perfect shot of your pet

More tips to get that perfect shot of your pet

Tagged in: Author: Dr Robyn Chandler

With so many pictures of beautiful animals saturating social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram nowadays, it's tough to get your pretty pet to stand out. A while ago we posted these 6 tips for perfecting your pet photos, and now we're sharing 10 more! So read on and get snapping...


Tip #7: A different perspective


Look to create an interesting, different perspective in your photography. You can give your photos a fun feeling by getting up close enough to distort your pet’s dimensions, or just by tilting the camera and taking a shot on the angle.


Tip #8: Schedule your shoot


If you want to snap some photos of your pet looking relaxed, pick a time of day when they are most likely to be resting, or take them out for a long walk just before your shoot. If you’d prefer to showcase your pet’s athleticism, take them out when they’re rearing to go and full of energy. Always make sure your pet is comfortable and not hungry or in need of a toilet break.


Tip #9: A helping hand


Getting a helper is a great idea whether it’s for repositioning animals that have wandered out of frame or for throwing a ball for them to chase, or even if it’s just to make silly noises to get your pet’s attention.


Tip #10: Legal highs


Catnip is a great tool for photographing cats. Although they don’t all respond to it those that do often give great reactions when encountering this harmless high. Their goofiness will soon start to mellow to a very relaxed and easy to photograph kitty. So set up the camera, bring out the catnip and get snapping.


Tip #11: Props


Don’t be scared to use props to add interest and character to your photos. You can dress your pets in outfits or place them in a teacup. Props can be especially useful with baby animals to add perspective to the scene. You could use the prop as a timeline to show the growth of your animal by say, photographing your puppy in a shoe when they are tiny, then later on chewing the same shoe when they are fully grown.


Tip #12: Speed matters


By using a fast shutter speed you can freeze the action and get sharp images of your pet in motion. Make sure your camera is set to autofocus, ideally in continuous focus mode. To get sharp shots of your pet against a blurry background, follow their movement with your camera. It’s much easier to keep a pet in focus when they’re moving side-to-side rather than straight towards you.


Tip #13: Quantity equals quality


In the digital age it costs nothing to take a lot of photos, so snap away and then delete the ones that don’t work. To capture the right split-second of the perfect ball catch or mid-air leap, it helps to take a lot of shots of the action. With camera phones and many point-and-shoot cameras there is a slight delay between pressing the button and the camera taking the photo, so we’d recommend setting these cameras to burst mode so that they snap off a series of photos, giving you the best chance of capturing the right moment.


Tip #14: Capture their personality


All pets have personality. If yours has a lazy temperament, get a shot of them yawning, stretching or even sleeping. If they’re slightly higher octane, try getting an energetic snap of them leaping, running or swimming.


Tip #15: Shoot the change


Often the most interesting photos of people are taken in the moment when an idea occurs and the change in thought or emotion flits across their face. For animals these thoughts are probably more basic (such as: why is mummy barking from the other side of that shiny box?) but it’s still worth trying to capture these moments by watching them patiently through the lens. This moment is easy to create by setting up your shot then doing something to capture their attention, such as barking.


Tip #16: Put people in the photo


Having people in your pictures can be both sentimental and practical – it’s great to have photos with your pet as they grow up, and a person holding their pet obviously helps to keep them still. Don’t limit yourself to a portrait shot with your pet - rather have the camera rolling while interacting with them, and you’ll be surprised by how many beautiful moments you’re able to capture.


Good photography is all about being prepared and being patient. Choose your location, the time of day and any props or toys that you may need. If your pet has predictable habits set yourself up to catch them in the act. Practise your yelping, barking and meowing and rope in a friend or partner to lend a helping hand (and of course to get some pics of you and your pet together). Get yourself thoroughly set up and then watch your furry friends through the lens until you capture those perfect moments.

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