Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Preparing for your Pet Photography Portrait Session

If you decide to have your pet photographed by a professional photographer, what can you do to improve the quality of the photographs and comfort of your pets?  Lots!

Bring your pet’s favorite treats (especially small soft treats), and favorite toys, along with a squeaky toy to get their attention. Have a leash handy if your pet will be outside.

Clean your pet or have it groomed a day or two before your photo session, especially check around their eyes and ears on the day of your photo session.  Brushing your pet and checking her teeth is helpful.

Inform the pet photographer of any health issues your pet has. And share a little about your pet’s personality.  Is he shy?  Is she alarmed by loud noises?  Will she try to escape through the front door when the photographer arrives?

Is your dog excitable? Take him for a walk before your photo session.

Share any information about particular photos you want.  If your dog is very active you might want a photo of your pet chasing a stick or playing with a Frisbee.  If your cat has a favorite pillow or window sill, do you want to have a photo taken in those locations?  Do you want a nice portrait close up to put on your wall or a mouse pad to give as a gift to your child?

Do you want a photo of your pet with family members?  Here are some personal ideas to help you plan ahead.

· Try not to wear the same color as your pet, so your outfit won’t merge with your pet.

· Dark or neutral shirts are usually good, preferably a different color than your pet.

· Avoid crazy patterns, clothing with writing, bright white shirts and bold prints, since they will attract more attention than your pet or your face.

· Short sleeves, sleeveless shirts, low necklines and shorts will draw the eye away from your face as well.

· Fitted clothing often looks better than loose baggy clothing.

· If multiple family members will be in the photos with your pet, try to wear similar or coordinated colors (but not matching outfits). Otherwise, you will draw attention to whoever is wearing the very light or bright color.

· Adult ladies can wear a little more makeup than usual, including powder to reduce the shine from sunlight or photo lights.

· Wear your hair in a style that doesn’t block your face. 
Good places to take photographs are at your house or somewhere where your pet feels comfortable, like a local park, beach or horse farm. You can help the photographer by looking for locations in advance, in and around your home that have plain uncluttered backgrounds. A neutral colored couch, plain wall without multicolored trim, a large bed with a solid color coverlet, a northern window, fireplace, garden or grassy back yard can work well.

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