If you have a dog, you likely have thousands of photos of them in your phone already. And after posting hundreds of those photos on social media, you might notice that some of them are starting to get a little repetitive. So, the question is: how do you change things up? Do you need to hire a professional photographer or do you just need a little inspiration to boost your creative juices?
In this blog, we’re going to take a look at five photography ideas that’ll help you take lively and creative dog photos.
- Natural lighting
If you usually take photos of your dog indoors, you should try taking them out to a more natural location. While your backyard might be a convenient option, try to expand your horizons a bit and visit some of the beautiful natural landscapes in your area. This could be a beach, a lake or a hiking trail.
In these settings, much of the beauty comes from the natural lighting that the sun provides. For example, at dawn or dusk, the colour of the sun and the skies tend to be more saturated. The orange hues become brighter and, if you’re lucky, you might even see some strong purples.
If you take photos of your dog under this kind of setting, you’re going to see them quite literally in a different light. Depending on what hue their fur is, you could stumble upon some interesting colour combinations.
One way to take advantage of the sunrise and the sunset is to take a photo of your dog’s silhouette. This is where you take a photo against the light source and capture the deep shadows created by your dog’s body. This will highlight their outline, including the shape of their ears, their snout and their tail.
Most cameras nowadays are able to take burst photos. As its name suggests, this method allows you to take multiple photos in a short burst of time. With this, you’ll be able to take a photo of your dog while in mid-action. They could be in mid-air, mid-bite or mid-pounce. As one would expect, this method works well when they’re in the middle of an activity such as when they’re playing catch or when they’re playfully chasing other dogs.
If you have an energetic dog and want to accentuate that personality trait, this is a great photo idea. Afterwards, you can even take the photo to a professional photographer for editing. They can exaggerate the movements of the dog and create a very lively and action-packed photo.
- Change up the angle
In photography, angles are extremely important. Depending on the perspective of the photographer, the same subject matter can evoke different emotions and moods. For example, if you take a photo of a tall Siberian Husky from a worm’s eye point of view, it’s going to create a sense of power and grandeur. However, if you take a photo of that same Husky looking up at the camera, that tall dog might start to look cute and sympathetic.
If you want something completely different, you might want to try extreme perspectives. For example, you can lay out a sheet of clear glass over a couple of planks and have your dog walk over it. If you’re able to place a camera under that glass, you’ll be able to take interesting photos of your dog’s paw prints.
- Narrowed focus
Some of the most popular photos in history are quite simple in terms of their subject matter. They often capture a single person, a single hallway, a single flag – a single moment. Indeed, it’s the focussed perspective that often captures our imagination and causes us to contemplate or simply admire the subject matter.
When you’re taking photos of your dog, see if you can focus on one particular feature. It could be their eyes, their snout, their ears or even their dog tag. Try to keep the subject matter as simple as possible. Force the viewers to look deeper as opposed to wider.
Such photos often open eyes to little details that we hadn’t noticed before. You might realise that your dog has hints of blue in their eyes or that one ear tends to droop lower than the other.
- Pets and owners
Like children, some pets don’t like to be apart from their ‘parents’. If your dog doesn’t want to stay still without you, take that opportunity to take photos of you and your dog. This will work quite well if you have a friend or a professional photographer to take photos of both of you.
One thing that you can ask the photographer to do is to accentuate the similarities between you and your dog. You could take a photo comparing the colour of your hair to your dog’s fur. Maybe you and your dog love lazing around in the late afternoon. Perhaps the photographer can take a photo of both of you laying on the couch together.
Regardless of how you go about it, including yourself in the photos is a fantastic idea. Not only will they serve as mementos of your dog, but it will also remind you of how you looked during that exact moment. In 10 years, you might not like how you look, but you’re almost guaranteed to like the fact that the photo was taken and that the memory was preserved.
These were just a few ideas to get the ball rolling. Even if you’re a photography hobbyist, you should still be able to take some amazing photos. Of course, when it comes to creative pursuits like photography, you should try to experiment as much as possible. There are no rules for self-expression, so you’re welcome to take these tips and run with them. If you need help or advice, you can always turn to a professional photographer.