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PHOTOGRAPHING FAMILY PETS

cats
Ever looked at the wonderful photos of pets in books and calendars and wondered just how the photographer managed to get the pet looking so photogenic? Do you look at your own photos of the dog or cat and find that it turned its head away as you snapped?

Almost any camera can be used to capture a pet on film but the best results are usually obtained by using a high-speed film and a fast shutter speed.
Cheaper digital cameras are often not fast enough but do have the advantage of allowing you to see the result without wasting money and time.

When taking the photo the camera should be at the same level as the animal to avoid distorting the pet's proportions. Taking the photo looking down on the pet makes the legs look short. Fill the view finder with the subject and don't forget to check the background as a tree or a chair 'growing' out of the pet's head can ruin an otherwise good photo.

One of the most important aspects of good pet photography is to capture the animal's personality. Keep a camera handy for those times when you see the animal doing something unusual or cute. Dogs and cats are always more ready to be photographed when they are in their own environment and comfortable in the position, such as asleep on their favourite chair rather than being posed. For close-up shots you will need a zoom lens as, if you move in to close too the subject, they will almost certainly move. Keeping animals in place long enough to obtain a posed shot can be difficult.

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When taking a photo of more than one puppy or kitten it is a good idea to put them in a basket as this keeps them all together within range of the camera. If you require the animals to look at the camera they can be attracted by making a soft noise or using a squeaky toy. Be prepared to use quite a bit of film to get the shot you want. All those professional photos for dogs and cats that you admire have taken a great deal of patience on the part of the photographer.

Black dogs and cats are difficult to photograph and it is important to make sure that they are against a lighter background. As with any subject, make sure that your shadow is not across the animal and if using a flash beware of 'red eye' where the flash reflects off the pet's eyes. To avoid this either take the photograph in light which does not require a flash or try not to have the pet looking at the camera.

When photographing children with their pets try to have the child and the animal on the same level.

When you add a new pet to the family start a photo album to record milestones in the pet's life, much the same as a baby album. The first photos may be of the new pet as you take it home from the breeder or the animal shelter, Pup's or Kitty's' first Christmas, birthdays etc and of course, the family pet on picnics and holidays and enjoying other family activities.




Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia

Last Update: 15/03/07 07:48 Views: 2363

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