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ideal photograph of dog's head

Photography Tips


Several good, clear, close-up photographs like the one above are ideal for a portrait. I really need to see the things that make your pet unique, such as the eyes, the fur, any special markings. Below are some simple tips for getting the perfect shot. It helps if you can send several photographs, indicating which one you feel best reflects your pet's character. No mobile phone images please as they will not be clear enough.

  • Try to take your photos outside or, if inside, near a large window to avoid using flash.

  • If inside, have your pet facing the window, with your back to the window. 

  • Avoid really sunny days as the sun will cast dark shadows on your subject and is likely to make your pet squint.

  • A bright day with thin cloud cover is ideal.

  • Get down to your pet's eye-level to avoid distortion and to get a good view of their eyes. You can put a small animal on a table or have someone hold them if that is easier.

  • Get someone to position themselves next to your shoulder (at the same level as you) with a treat or toy to get the animal's interest. 

  • Ideally don't have your pet looking straight at the camera, but partially side on as this makes a more interesting portrait (see above).

  • Don't worry about what is in the background as I can edit that out.

  • If you want a portrait with a specific background take a picture of this separately without the pet in the foreground.

  • If you want more than one animal in your portrait, take a photograph of each one separately. I can put them together in the final artwork.

Please don't worry if you think your photographs are not good enough. Perhaps you want to commission a portrait of an animal that has died and only have old prints? I can still do a lot with poor photographs, so I can always take a look at what you have to see what I can do.

If you live within a 20 mile radius of Dornoch, I am happy to come to take photographs for just the cost of my travel. It's an added bonus for me to meet the animals I'm going to draw or paint! Just use my contact page, give me a call on 01408 641204 or contact me at lyn@artfulcreatures.co.uk to request this service.

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