Dog Photography Tips on Outdoor Portraits Part 1

I’m an outdoor dog photographer. Plain and simple, I love the outdoor lighting, I love the attitude outdoors, I love everything about outdoor photography. Now, that doesn’t mean I won’t photograph a dog indoors, I just prefer outdoors. Especially for portraits. Now, most portraits consist of dogs in front of sometimes cheesy backgrounds and sometimes they look really bad, and sometimes they look really good. (I will be giving dog photography tips on indoor portraits soon)

In this photo, I did place Candy in that position in front of the windmill, but her looking off to the side was her own idea. I love “candid” looking portraits especially if they have an interesting background. Like for instance the windmill. But I’ve seen and photographed dogs on all kinds of different backgrounds. Natural backgrounds look the best to me as long as they don’t overpower the subject. This is where I use the Aperture Priority mode on my camera and for blurred backgrounds I set it on 5.6 or lower.

In the photo above, I had the aperture dialed up to like 8.0 because I was shooting with my 70-300 VR lens (as usual) since I wanted the full windmill in the photo I had to back off about 50-60 feet because I was using a telephoto lens. Now this photo isn’t the typical close up of a dogs face, but it paints a perfect picture of the owner and dogs’ personality in the photo.

The photo above was a candid photo, I just looked up and Wolfe was standing there in perfect line with the windmill and all I did was raise my camera and snapped the shot. A dog photography tip for candid photos; keep your eyes open and not chiming about the photos you see in the LCD screen. You can chim about the photos all you want later on the computer.

This photo was taken by my mom. That’s me and my best friend Candy. The dog photography tip I want to point out about this photo is that it looks like me and Candy are in a forest when in reality, I’m sitting on a dirt pile covered with brush and plants with a tree on top in my backyard. So keep your eyes open for dirt piles and trees with weeds around them. :)  Also, another dog photography tip for dog and people portraits; makes sure the person is wearing the opposite color clothes to the dogs coat. That tip comes from my AKC show days; I’d spend hours shopping for the right color suit for the dogs I was showing.