I absolutely adore taking pictures of my dog and will snap away at any given chance, whether it’s on my digital SLR camera, the pocket point and click or on my phone. I’m quite ruthless afterwards at deleting the ones I consider to be rubbish, but I have to be! If I kept all of them my hard drive would be screaming at me for more space.
You don’t have to have the biggest and best camera out there to take a nice picture and I wanted to share with you what I take in to consideration when taking a photograph to help you get the best from whatever camera you have.
Having good natural light helps capture a picture, particularly with a moving object like a dog. Cameras need light in order to get a picture in focus, especially if the object isn’t still.
Being out in the open will help you get a picture in focus, whereas in the woods or indoors you will have more chance of blurring unless your dog is perfectly still.
Think about where the light is coming from as well. If your lens is facing straight in to the sun, you may end up with a large part of the picture covered with sun rays and your image looking washed out. Instead, try to have the sun behind you so that you have all of the beautiful light bringing your dog to life. Don’t forget to avoid getting your shadow in the picture too!
2. Portrait or landscape?
I tend to take most pictures of my dog in landscape in order to capture the scenery and to show a bit more of what they’re up to.
Changing the direction of your camera can give you a much more diverse image, rather than the photo just being about your dog, it can highlight who they’re playing with, what they’re chasing or the moment they have been caught up in.
Portrait pictures are just for that – taking a portrait.
If your dog is looking intently at something, whether it be a deer, squirrel, stick or muddy puddle, try to include it within your picture.
So, if you’re dog is playing a great game of fetch, taking a picture with the ball at your feet and your dog staring, waiting for it to be thrown, is much better than an just image of your dog staring in to the lens.
Showing what your dog is focused on will not only make the scenery more relevant, it will add character and tell a story to your snapshot.
A rookie mistake is to stand over your dog, point the camera down and click.
A shot of the top of your dog’s head or back doesn’t really tell anyone anything about your dog or what made you choose that moment to take a picture.
To capture as much detail as possible, squat down to their level and get those beautiful eyes on full display.
5. Make your dog centre stage
Unless you’re trying to capture something other than your dog, make them centre of the picture. If they’re to one side of the image, ultimately they will end up with body parts cut off.
This isn’t about being the next David Bailey, but hopefully thinking about a few of these steps will give you a better result and more treasured memories.
At Holybrooks, we take pictures on all of our dog walks, please head over to our Facebook page to take a look.