Photographs can evoke a variety of emotion but my favourites are the ones that make you smile inside which then sneaks into a smile on your face without you realising. I was editing a recent shoot of some friends and their joyful dogs and found myself sitting there smiling at the screen. This is what I aim to happen from every shot, depending on whether you are photographing pets on their own or with their loving owners.
The above photograph makes me smile every time I look at it, it captures the joy brought by the dogs but also show’s Dude’s goofball character when he sneaks up from behind and says peek-a-boo when he should be heeling. Don’t stop snapping if you think its gone wrong candid shots always result in the most natural feel. (which I love)
As well as capturing the owners joy I will also try and get at least a few snaps per shoot of the dogs just living thier best life and exuding happiness out of the photograph to the viewer.
They don’t come much happier than this little smoosh head, Nuka who most certainly lives her best life and I think this capture goes some of the way to show that. So make sure for half the shoot at least you quit with the posing and let the dog do something it loves (within reason, snaps of Fido chasing the milkman might be funny but not necessarily joyful)
Since worrying less about the serious posed shots my work has evolved and now I’m capturing happiness and I love it. This also goes back to talking to your clients and finding out how they tick to discover what makes them and their dog most happy. Do this before the shoot as you may find that they both love love love the beach, which would make a great setting for happy snaps.
That said it is not just my subjects that show joy, photographing all these gorgeous animals and their owners brings me immense happiness and I like to think that also shines through in my work. (I use work loosely, how can it be classed as work when I enjoy it this much)
I’ll finish with this capture of Aero living his best life! “I believe I can fly”
I am part of an amazing blog circle filled with talented pet photographers….next please go and check out