Preparing For Your Pet's Photo Session

When preparing for a photography session with your pet there are several things that you can do to ensure the session flows smoothly.

  1. Make sure the photographer has the same understanding of what you are looking for in your photos as you do.
  2. What do you plan on using the photographs for? The purpose of the photos can determine how the photography session flows as well as what types of photographs are focused on.
  3. It is important the photographer know how many pets will be in the photograph as well as the number of individuals that are going to be photographed. This can have an effect on where the shots are taken and how long the session will last. If the photographer knows this information ahead of time, this ensures everyone remains relaxed and comfortable and that all the shots are captured.
  4. To make certain your clothing compliments your pet's coloring, dress in solid colors that are free of logos or designs. If there are several individuals in the photo with the pet(s), plan ahead to ensure everyone is wearing complimentary colors.
  5. If you are an individual with a light colored complexion it is best to wear dark colors such as a dark tan, browns, grays, dark greens, dark blues, etc.
  6. For a darker completion wear lighter shades such as light tan, light brown, light greens, light blues, etc.
  7. If your pet has darker coloring, then wear clothing a few shades lighter, or if your pet is a lighter color, you want to wear clothing a few shades darker.
  8. Do not wear white unless you have a vest/jacket over the shirt.
  9. Depending on the type of session or the use of your photos your attire could be formal, relaxed, or every day.

Preparations for your pet:

Have your pet(s) well groomed and clean. Think about bringing along an assistant to help hold your pet or get their attention. The assistant will be behind the camera and can do different things to ensure that the pet's ears are forward and your pet is looking in the direction needed for the shot.

Choosing a location:

Choose a location that is relaxing, that you and your pet are familiar with and are free of distractions and clutter.

Make sure that both you and your pet are relaxed, well rested, and have had a good meal before the photography shoot. Having your pet's favorite treats along to get their attention or reward them during your session is also helpful.

During your Photography Session:

Most photography sessions begin with a brief discussion about the relationship you have with your pet and taking a look around for photographic areas at your chosen location. The more relaxed you are, the more relaxed your pet will be, and the results are more natural looking photographs.

The type of relationship you have with your pet will also dictate what photos are captured. I encourage you to interact with your pet as if I were not there to capture a variety of other shots. The type of shots that are captured will depend on how the session is going, the individual, the pet, and their relationship.

Early in the day the pets are generally alert, but still relaxed and willing to pay attention to the assistant and photographer. Though photos that involve the pet(s) and individual(s) looking directly into the camera are posed, my focus is still on a natural interaction between you and your pet. These types of photos can be taken in a number of locations inside or outside your home.

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