Dogs are like better versions of humans, but with furry coats and waggy tails.
They also have loads of character and personality — probably even more than most humans! They’re cuddly, funny, fiercely loyal, and they give us lots of unconditional love that we frankly don’t deserve.
A dog’s vibrant personality is what makes him so special, and it’s also what makes him such an integral part of the family. As dog owners, we want to create memories and take photos that perfectly capture our fur friend’s overall awesomeness and unique personality.
Here are some tips to help you do that:
1. Make your dog feel comfortable with the camera.
You won’t be able to take good photos if your dog isn’t used to being in front of (or anywhere near) a camera.
Let him get acquainted with your camera gear by letting him smell it and see it up close. Let him hear the shutter go off and see how he responds. After that, take a few photos of him.
Using the same camera, try to take a photo every once in a while so that eventually, your dog will get used to camera’s presence and to the occasional photo shoot.
2. Put your dog at ease.
A photogenic dog is a happy and relaxed dog.
Before attempting your next photo session, take him on a walk and make sure he is well-fed. Try to give him a belly rub or engage in a bit of play to get him in the best possible mood.
3. Pose with your dog.
Another way to help your dog feel more comfortable and at ease with the camera is by being in the shot with him.
Do some adorable poses with your dog to show him that being photographed can be fun. Dogs love spending time with their owners, so they’re bound to be more comfortable in front of the camera if you’re right there with them.
4. Give him some treats and toys.
Bring out your dog’s inner puppy (unless he still is a puppy) by giving him some treats or toys.
As every dog parent knows, dogs are more inclined to do what you want them to do when there’s an incentive. He won’t mind sitting still for a few poses if he knows he’s going to get a treat out of it!
Consider putting a treat on top of your camera as well, as this will help catch and keep his attention and ensure that he actually looks at the camera.
5. Shoot in a familiar environment.
Doing your photo shoot at the nearest park may make for a gorgeous backdrop, but make sure that it’s a familiar environment for your pet—otherwise, he may not be as comfortable.
To successfully capture your dog’s sparkling personality, make sure to do the photo shoot in a place where he can feel safe and relaxed.
6. Do some fun activities together.
If your dog is having fun, you’re more likely to get some really great shots.
What activities do you and your dog like to do together? Go for a hike, take a dip in the pool, or maybe just get some ice cream (dog-friendly flavors only, of course) together—just do something fun that you know your dog will enjoy to set up some awesome photo-ops.
Extra tips for better pet photos:
- Use your camera’s manual setting, especially for action shots.
- Use natural light and avoid the flash if you can.
- If you’re using a DSLR or mirrorless camera, use a special lens like a macro (to capture tiny details) or a zoom lens.
- Get on your dog’s eye level.
- Shoot a variety of emotions: happy, confused, relaxed, sleepy or even annoyed!
- Have fun and BE PATIENT!
[NOTE: After practicing with all these great tips, upload your awesome photo to the Dogs Naturally Cover Dog Contest and you could be seeing your dog on the next cover of Dogs Naturally Magazine! Click Here for photo entry and requirements.]