6 Tips To Help You Take Great Photos of Your Pet

 Taking The Paw'fect Pic

Those adorable members of your family make great subjects to take heart-warming, memorable photographs.

The only problem is that your furry buddies cannot understand what their humans are trying to do with their phones and cameras. Getting them to sit still and pose for a picture is one of the most challenging tasks. 

But, with a bit of thinking and a whole lot of insights into your pet’s behaviour, you might just take the perfect pictures that can be converted into pet portraits.

Check out these tips offered by the pros that can help you capture images to tell a story about your little bud and their personality.

It’s All About the Lighting

When taking pictures of your four-legged friends, choose a setting with lots of natural light. While your photography session is best conducted outdoors, you can also select a well-lighted room with plenty of windows.

Remember to turn off the flash since it could cause the red-eye effect. Further, clicks and flashes might scare the little guy and make him take off, leaving you with a blur.

Cat | Lighting 

Wait for the Perfect Shot

Capturing the perfect pose at the right moment takes an infinite amount of patience. You can’t set your furry friend down and get them to sit still.

So, professional photogs advise you to get down to your pet’s level. Lay on your belly close to where they're playing.

Pick a position where you’re at eye level and then wait for the exact time when your friend looks directly at the camera. You could try piquing their interest with a new toy or treat to attract some attention.

If you can, get a friend to keep the pet busy and entertained as you take the pictures.

Aim for the Correct Angle

The best pet image is one that focuses on your friend’s eyes. If you’re investing in a camera, get a model that comes with eye AF activation. The camera will pick out your pet’s eyes and consistently maintain focus even if the subject moves.

Eye sharpness ensures that you get a glimpse into the little guy’s soul by capturing their expressions. If the angle gets only one eye,  make sure to aim your camera in that direction.

Be prepared to click a series of images in quick succession. With that, you’ll get the ultimate photograph that says a thousand words. 

cat | close up of face 

Get the Right Equipment

High-grade equipment always ensures quality images. Use a smartphone or camera that takes hi-def photos. If you’re trying a professional-grade photoshoot, pick out the right lens.

For instance, a macro lens will allow you to capture sharp details of the entire scene, along with the backdrop of your home or garden. 

But, if you’re going for candid shots where the little guy is playing or exploring, you are better off with a telephoto lens. These lenses take incredible pictures from a distance, so your friend does not notice the camera.

Pet parents preferring a broader perspective of the entire background might want to use a wide-angle lens.

What Does Your Pet Like Best?

That’s the first question you should ask yourself. Every pet parent recognizes unique personality traits within their pets.

Your dog might love to stare out the window at passers-by or cars. Or, your cat might love to nap in a particular pose. They might have this pleading expression when trying to snag an extra treat.

If a habit or activity always has you going, “Awwww!” Next time, have your phone ready to take a picture. 

calm puppy 

Some Final Tips for Photographic Pet Portraits

Before grabbing your camera, here are some added tips you might find interesting. First, make sure that the little friend’s head and neck are visible, especially if you intend to commission a portrait later.

Avoid areas with low lighting or angled lighting that can cast long and deep shadows. Look for poses where your pet isn’t laying down but rather sitting upright or standing.

An ideal time to capture a shot is when the little guy has just had a meal and looks happy and content. When you snap a photo right before or after nap time when their reflexes aren’t quick,  you have a reduced possibility of any sudden movements. 

Photographing your pets is an exciting activity where you can capture fond moments of your time spent with your furry friend. Using these tips will help you get some great images to cherish for a long time. 

Article by West & Willow


West & Willow celebrate the bond between people and pets by offering tastefully designed pet portraits.

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