Saturday, September 25, 2010

Doggie Glamour Photo Shoot

I still haven't had the time nor energy to paint my photography studio white. The new blood pressure medication that my doctor put me on really kicks my butt. I'm so depleted of energy that just the thought of hooking up the horse trailer or lifting a saddle onto a horse's back is too much for me. However, today I drank coffee until I had enough energy to do a quick photo shoot with the dogs.

I got a new master flash unit and tripod from my husband for my birthday and I wanted to try them out. It was a very educational experience. First of all, I definitely have to paint the walls and ceiling white, and rip up that green carpet in the studio. With the walls, ceiling, and floor all being green, Scrappy's gray fur came out green, so I had to make some adjustments with my Capture One editor.

I used a 50mm prime lens, but really should have used my macro for some of the really close up shots, because there were some depth of field problems. With the close up shots, either the nose, the eyes, or the ears could be in focus, but not all three at once. It did help if the dogs tipped their noses down, though.

I'm reading a wonderful book called "Creative Canine Photography" by Larry Allan. It was published in 2003, so some of the information is outdated, but it is still a gem of a book. It contains plenty of crucial information for pet photographers.

My main problem was not having a big enough background. I was just using a white towel at first, but if the dog turned its head or the light changed, I had to move to a different vantage point, which resulted in me losing my clean background. I took 146 pictures and about 19 of them were good quality. I visited a portrait studio this past week to get a peek at all of their equipment. I definitely need at least one strobe light, a soft box, and some backdrops before I can start taking on customers in the studio. The great outdoors still has plenty to offer in the way of lighting and backgrounds, though.

I had to get down on my knees and shoot up to avoid getting the carpet or baseboard in some pictures and that hurt on a concrete floor. I might carry my knee guards with me on photo shoots in the future. Which photo is your favorite and why?

After the photo shoot, the dogs needed a pee break, of course.


Stacey said...

I like the 2nd one of Scrappy, because of his expression.

fernvalley01 said...

the second one , is so nice, not sure , but it grabs me.The one with Midge licking her chops is too cute then 2 below that her looking slightly up to you .You have soem lovely shots there!

Cheryl Ann said...

Nuzz, I LOVE them all! I wish I could take photos like that, but I just don't have the patience! They are so cute and you have captured their personalities!

lytha said...

my favorite is the one near the end where you can see scrappy's tail. it looks almost like a sculpture of a dog.


Leah Fry said...

I also like the 2nd one of Scrappy, and for the same reason. I also like #5 of both dogs.

Jeni said...

They are all great pictures!

Crystal said...

I have to agree with everyone else about number 2, he looks so innocent and cute in theat photo!

Breathe said...

# 2... Shows Scrappy's personality - which is what I think most dog owners want you to catch. I agree that the one with his tail is cute but the crop isn't quite right. (Don't ask me why)

Midge looks pretty good throughout, I'd say the one after the lick is the best of her.

Callie said...

I love them all. Such little cuties. Love the old man!

Anonymous said...

I love them all and can't pick!

I'm so glad you adopted Scrappy. I saw an older dog this morning that had been surrendered to the animal shelter because he didn't get along with the family's new puppy. So unfair! I cried.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Oh my goodness! These all turned out great! You are really honing your skills!

I was starting to pick out my favorites and then they became more than I could keep track of, so I'll choose the ones that are NOT my favorites......nothing terrible about them, but they might be just a little less than perfect for my eyes, or just not quite as good as the other photos(still good, though): 1, 3, 4, 9, 11, 13, 14.

Oh! And #6 was adorable! Made me laugh. Such a fun shot, and not all that easy to capture.

Well done!!!


achieve1dream said...

I love number two and eight. I just love their expressions! Great job!