The best time of year to take pictures of your pet is autumn and winter. This is because during this time the colours in the garden are changing and your pets are more active, which makes them look happier. When it comes to taking photos of your pet, try using a tripod. This will stop them from moving around, which might give them bad posture and make them look stressed. If possible, get them used to being photographed at an early age, so they get used to the idea that their picture could end up on the internet.
If you have a cat, try to find a suitable spot where they can see out of the window, but don’t put a window directly behind you, as they might try to jump out. If you are photographing your dog, make sure that they are not sleeping on your lap. You may also need to get a pet photographer to help you with some tips on how to take pictures of your pet.
How to take good photos
Have fun with your pet by using a wide-angle lens. If your cat is looking straight at you when you take the photo, you will get a big smile on their face. If you take a few shots, you will see that the best ones have the cat’s eyes open and look away.
Try to use natural light, rather than a flash. The latter can cause glare and shadows in the eyes and on the face. If you have a dark room, use a white backdrop to brighten up the shot. Make sure that the lighting in your room is even across the whole room.
If you take photos indoors, make sure there is enough light in the room so that there are no shadows. Try to avoid having your dog jumping or running around while you are taking the picture. If possible, try to take a few shots without them.
Make sure that your pet is comfortable by placing a treat in their mouth for them to chew on. This will help them focus on you and not try to escape. If your pet has a white coat, use a piece of black card to cover their white fur.
Keep your camera at eye level when taking photos. Your pet should also be able to see where they are going. You can hold them up with a piece of string or rope, so that they know what to do when they are ready to get up. If they are very happy to see you, you can also use a toy as a reward, so they learn that you will always return.
If your pet is feeling stressed, it can make them look unwell. Make sure that they are breathing properly by checking for sneezing and coughing. If you are photographing a litter of puppies, it might be easier to get them used to being in front of the camera before you take pictures of them.
If you have a long-haired dog, make sure that their hair is lying flat. You should also use a collar that doesn’t go around their neck, as it may lead to them breathing into their mouth and making their fur look messy.
Take your pet out for a walk once a day. This will make them feel more relaxed and happy, and will also help them to get used to being photographed. If you take your pet for a walk twice a week, you will find that they are more relaxed and less likely to be tense or bored.
Make sure that you choose the best spot to take photos of your pet. Try to keep the background simple, such as grass or a wall, rather than lots of clutter. Try to position your pet in the middle of the frame.
Try not to place your pet too close to the edge of the frame. Your pet can get in a bit of a state if they see something they want to get to. If your pet is jumping or running around, they may knock over the camera. Make sure that there is no other pet in the room.
Try not to stand directly in front of the camera when taking photos. If you have a flash, make sure that the light isn’t going straight into your eyes. Use a reflector, which will bounce the light into a different direction.
Don’t try to take a photo of your pet if they are lying down. They might look relaxed but be unwell. Take pictures of your pet standing up or sitting up on a chair.
If you are taking photos indoors, make sure that there is enough light to brighten up the shot. If possible, place the light source from behind, so that it will light up the background, and not the face of the animal.
If you have an outdoor camera, place the lens on the side of the house and not directly in front of you. This will stop them from running away from you.
Use a tripod to steady the camera. If your pet is looking straight at you when you take the photo, you will get a big smile on their face.
Photo editing tips
Take a few pictures without your pet and use the best ones as your original image. Once you are happy with the first set of images, you can edit the second set. Use Photoshop to make adjustments to the size of the photos or add a border. You can also apply filters to make your pet look more beautiful.
A quick and easy way to get started is to do some research on where you can find free images online. There are plenty of free stock sites out there, such as Pixabay and Fotolia.com, which both have an enormous selection of images. Alternatively, if you already have your own photography equipment, such as a DSLR camera, a smartphone or a point-and-shoot digital camera, you could try taking your pet into a studio or even shooting your pet at home with your own camera.
Get to know your subject.
To make sure that the image is great quality and not just okay, you need to spend time getting to know your pet. This means spending time playing, stroking, feeding and cuddling with it. It also means asking your pet what it likes to do and what it doesn’t like, so you can create an environment that’s enjoyable for both you and your pet. When taking photos, keep it simple by focusing on the essentials: the eyes, nose, paws and tail.
Make sure you ask permission.
Most pet owners will be happy to have their pets photographed, but if you’re unsure, give them a call and find out. The last thing you want is to post a picture online only to find out your cat hates having its photo taken. You also don’t want your pet to feel pressured into being in front of the camera. Take time to get to know your pet before trying to take their photo. Your pet will be much more comfortable and relaxed when they know that you’re going to take good care of them.
The best way to capture the most natural shots is with a professional pet photographer. You can book a session online or by phone. Some offer free consultations, where you can sit down with them and discuss your ideas for the pictures, which will then help you decide what kind of photos you want. If you’d rather not spend the money on a pet photographer, however, there are many apps you can download that do the job well enough.
Even if you’ve been shooting pets before, it’s always good to try taking some pictures of your own. If you are new to this type of photography, take pictures of your pets from a variety of different angles and distances. Remember that it’s better to have too many images than to have none at all. This is because it’s much harder to retouch and edit a single image than several. So, while you may want to delete some of your pictures, keep in mind that the more practice you get, the easier it will be to edit your shots.
When it comes to choosing a camera, make sure that you don’t buy the latest and greatest model on the market. Take a look at older models or even rent one for a few weeks. If you’re planning on getting into this hobby full time, however, we recommend investing in your own equipment as soon as possible.
Do it in low light.
Unless you’re going to have a professional pet photographer take your picture, most pet photos will have to be taken at night. This means that you’ll need to be prepared to sit still for several minutes while your cat or dog looks cute in the darkness. Try to arrange to photograph your pet during its favourite time of day: for example, after they’ve eaten or when they are asleep. If you need to wake your pet up before taking their photo, try playing music with them.
If you are using a smartphone or point-and-shoot camera, be sure to have enough memory on it. You don’t want your shot to be lost because you didn’t have enough space. For more on using your smartphone as a camera, check out this article:
Keep it simple.
One of the most important things about getting a professional pet photographer is that you should always be able to take great photos with the camera on your phone. The last thing you want to do is spend hours trying to get your pictures just right. Don’t try to take too many shots at once, instead, try to take one or two and edit them into a perfect composition. If you are taking your pet’s portrait by yourself, keep it simple by focusing on the essentials: the eyes, nose, paws and tail. If you are using an app, don’t try to make it look too fancy, just make sure that you focus on the essentials of the image: for example, bright eyes, fluffy fur and clean teeth.
Do you have any tips to add?
We’d love to hear your pet-related stories! What has been the most memorable experience you have had while taking photos of your pet? And what would you say is the best way to take your pet’s photo? We’re looking forward to hearing from you!
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