Learn Pet Photography

Free editing tutorials, product reviews, mentoring session wrap-ups and more!

Tip of the Day – Centered Composition

We’ll start off with the simplest element, which is often overlooked and even shunned because it is so basic. Centering is what most people who are starting out as photographers default to - after all...

Tip of the Day – Space out your subjects

Silhouettes are one of my favourite ways to incorporate owners into the session, without placing too much pressure on them. I like to explain to them that silhouettes will only show their outline - they’ll...

Tip of the Day – Switch to wide

Here’s a tip for creating variety when photographing dogs with their owners. If you’re finished taking a group shot with a long lens to capture natural interactions, ask them to stay where they are while you...

Tip of the Day – Keep faces close

For posed portraits (which people do sometimes request), if you are working with dogs of different sizes, try to bring the larger dog down to the smaller dog’s level, and bring any people in the...

Tip of the Day – Walk up and back

Shooting from a long way back and zooming in with a telephoto lens is a great way to include the surroundings, while reducing the pressure on people to “pose”. I often send them off for...

Tip of the Day – Capture genuine moments

I can’t emphasis enough, how important it is with pets and people to capture natural interactions, expressions and poses. Asking people to pose and micro-managing where their hands or arms are, or where exactly they...

Tip of the Day – The golden glow

In the second editing tutorial in RealShoots Episode 2, I take you through a complete edit - from white balance, contrast, tone corrections and local adjustments to really bring out that golden hour glow in...

Tip of the Day – Recalling water action

This shot was taken at during the session at the little creek. We’d let Bandit off to have a sniff around and a break from all the hardcore modelling he’d been doing! Breaks are essential...

Tip of the Day – Distracted action

Our dog model for the session was Bandit, a three year old rescue dog adopted from the shelter just a year ago. His parentage is unknown, but there's thought to be some Rhodesian Ridgeback in...

Tip of the Day – Playing games

This image of Bandit and his mum Leanne was taken at the shoot towards the end of the session. Bandit liked to do this own thing while off-leash, not really interested in chasing a ball...

Tip of the Day – Perfectly framed

Especially when shooting in urban areas, use your surroundings to frame and feature dog and owner relationships. This beautiful church doorway creates the perfect frame for Hugo the Great Dane and his mum Sarah, and...

Tip of the Day – Give them space

When working with dogs that are fearful with new people but have a solid, trusting relationship with their owners, capturing “dog and owner” shots while hanging back and zooming in with a long lens can...

Tip of the Day – Get down to their level

Getting down to the level of the dog applies when both photographing them, as well as being photographing with them, especially when the subject is a little dog and even more importantly, when it’s an...

Tip of the Day – Ask the question

In my pre-session questionnaire, I ask if people wish to be in some of the photos with their pets. I make it pretty clear I’m not a family photographer, but I always invite people to...

Tip of the Day – Look up

Lighting can be tricky in urban areas, with sources of shade from buildings from multiple directions at once. To ensure you obtain catchlights in the eyes always face your subject towards a light source. If...

Tip of the Day – Level up

It can be a real balancing act to feature very small subjects, such as little dogs like Chase here, in a scene where they are so dwarfed by everything around them. Large elements abound in...

Tip of the Day – Search for colour

Colour is another element that’s usually more readily available when shooting in urban areas. Rather than the earthy greens and browns of natural areas, in urban areas keep an eye out for different colours and...

Tip of the Day – Urban doorways

When shooting in urban areas, always keep an eye out for interesting doorways - those that are rustic, brightly coloured or contrasting with the surrounding wall, or have unique features. Doorways are handy for framing...

Tip of the Day – Embrace the black

Embrace the black - black dogs are absolutely perfect for silhouettes! Because they are already so dark, there is a greater exposure difference between them and the sky already so there isn’t as much need...

Tip of the Day – Watch for colour casts

Watch for colour casts! Black fur is very good at picking up colours casts from it’s surroundings. The most common issue I see with black dogs is when they’ve been photographed in the shade and end...

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