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  • Gone To the Dogs Photography

Phone Pet Photography Tricks

Updated: Jun 19, 2020

It's so easy to grab our phones out of our pockets and take photos of our pets, but would you like to improve your phone photography skills? I've got six tips for you to help give your pet's Instagram feed a bit of a facelift! Houndstooth - a great little pet botique in Burlington - and I joined up for an Instagram Live to talk about these tricks, but here are some of the tips for you in case you missed it!

1. Make it a positive experience.

Some dogs are intimidated when we put our cell phones right in their faces to take photos. Condition your dog to know that when your phone comes out the treats start flowing! Use high-value treats if your dog is especially camera shy. Finn was enjoying some tasty morsels his mom brought with her, but I usually use hot dogs or freeze-dried liver.

2. Get low!

The most powerful photos are those where the camera is on the same level as the dog. I was actually laying right on the ground to take this photo of Tater Tot. If your dog is a toy breed, such as a Chihuahua, prop the dog up on a rock or bench to help get them to eye level.

3. Look for great light.

This shot of Ivy was taken at about 6:45 in the morning. The early bird gets the great photo! "Golden Hour" is the best time to take photos. We are lucky enough to have two Golden Hours every day - one right after the sun rises and one right before the sun sets!

4. Make silly noises!

Stella has the best head-tilt. Hands down. She was super interested in the funny noises I was making as I took this photo of her. Monkey noises, whining, high-pitched voices are all great to get that adorable expression from your pet. Make sure to have your phone's camera ready to go so you don't miss the head tilt though!

5. Use your phone camera's auto-focus feature to focus on your dog's face.

Open up your camera, aim it, and press and hold on whichever object you want to focus on. A little yellow box comes up and says "AE/AF Lock." This holds the focus on the object as you shoot. Use portrait mode to get that nice blurry background!

6. Edit your photos right on your phone.

Most of the time our photos don't come out quite like we planned. Fear not! You can fix a crooked photo, brighten up the lighting, edit the colors, and apply filters right in the "Edit" option (upper right-hand corner). Play around with it, there are so many edits you can make. Black and white edits are super fun too!

If you've tried any of these tips, I'd love to see! Tag me on social media @gonetothedogsphotography so I can see your work. While cell phone photography has made huge improvements lately (hello iphone 11!), if you're planning on printing any photos for your home, professional cameras always provide the best quality. Get in touch if you'd like to book a session!

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