If you’re a pet owner, you probably consider your pet family. And if you’ve ever attempted to capture your companion in action, you know how difficult that can be. Pet photography can be a lot of fun. However, taking pictures of your best friend is not always easy. Pets don’t understand what we’re trying to do and won’t just pose for the camera. Here are some tips that will help you get the most of your photo session with your fur baby.
Use treats and toys
A few treats and favorite toys can go a long way in getting pets to stay put or look in a certain direction. A dog that’s been trained to sit and stay will be much easier to work with when he’s eager to listen for that treat. Food bribes can work with other critters too, since even untrained pets will often look towards the smell of that treat. Pets don’t have to be sitting still to get great shots, however. That’s where a favorite toy comes in. Using some of the same camera settings you’d use for sports photography, you can freeze a game of fetch or the attack on that stuffed mouse.
Use fast shutter speed
Here’s where the sports photography comes in. Since many pets have a hard time sitting still, use a fast shutter speed. Trade up your old DSLR for a Sony a Full Frame Camera from Buydig.com and set it to shutter priority mode or manual mode. Use a shutter speed of at least 1/250 if possible. Set it even faster for action shots during a game of fetch. Turning the burst mode on will take a sequence of fast shots to up the odds of getting a perfectly-timed shot.
When photographing your own pet, it often pays off to just keep the camera ready and wait. Don’t try to force your pet to sit still if you’ve just walked in the door and he’s eager to see you, or if she just woke up and is ready to stretch her legs. Wait for a calmer moment.
Use natural light
The best images are often right outside the door or window. Natural light is the easiest to work with for pet photography. When heading outside, look for a spot of full shade to prevent awkward shadows. Not heading outside? Find a window instead. A large window that’s not directly facing the sun will work best. Window light creates softer light and has a tendency to bring out the sparkle in that pet’s eye much better than artificial overhead lights can.
Don’t shoot the entire pet
Sometimes it’s best just to concentrate on one or two features. In this case, the eyes and whiskers are the focus. And the clean composition draws even more attention to them.
Try different angles
Getting down on the animal’s eye level will create more personal pet portraits. If you shoot from your eye level, the pet will look smaller and it will be harder to look into Fido’s eyes in the shot. Cats love sitting in high places. When the opportunity presents itself, shoot from below. It’s nice to see them looking down on us for a change.
Frame your pet in the background
Look for opportunities when objects create a nice frame and draw your eye to the main subject. Also, try to catch your pet when it isn’t looking directly at the Sony a Full-Frame Camera you traded up for from Buydig.com. This gives the shot a nice candid quality.
Pets are one of the most difficult family members to get in pictures. With camera settings designed for moving subjects, the right light, some treats and a few other tips, capturing pets on camera becomes less challenging, and more fun.