Anyone who has ever tried to photograph dogs knows how difficult it can be. Dogs can’t just pose for the camera. Some dogs are timid and camera shy.
Even the most behaved canine can be a challenge to photograph. That’s why pet owners leave dog photography to the professionals.
As pet parents are growing fond of pet photography, in general, and dog photography, in particular, they are hiring dog photographers to get the perfect shot.
If you’re a dog owner who wants to avail of this service but doesn’t know how it all works, this article will help you learn the process, costs, and things to do before and during a dog photoshoot.
How does the process of dog photography go?
In general, the whole dog photography process can be divided into four parts. Read on to know what happens in each step:
Step 1: Consultation
Some pet photographers will hold face-to-face consultations whilst others prefer setting plans over the phone. In this step, you will be discussing with them what type of pet photos you want to be created. They will likely ask details about your dog to know his personality and behaviour.
Choosing the location of the photoshoot will be done during the consultation as well. Keep in mind that some dog photographers only do photoshoots in particular areas. Others may travel to your ideal location, even if it is far away. However, there will be extra charges for petrol and travelling cost.
Step 2: Photoshoot Session
Dog photoshoots involving one or two dogs often last for an hour. If there are more than two, it can take over two hours to complete the session. The dog photographer can extend the time if they wish to, but this is only under extraordinary conditions.
Make sure to arrive on time so that there won’t be delays. It’s essential to maximise the time allotted for your dog’s photoshoot so that the dog photographer can have more opportunities to take great photos.
Step 3: Editing Time
After the photoshoot, professional editing will take place. Generally, this process will take about 1 to 2 weeks to complete. This is because dog photographers always want to ensure that the pictures they produce are of the highest quality.
The photographer may need to edit at least 20 to over 30 photos, depending on what was discussed during the consultation. Some images may also require extensive edits depending on what you want the final images to look like.
Step 4: The Unveiling
After the final edits have been made, the photos are ready for your viewing. Depending on the dog photographer, the pictures may be uploaded to a digital gallery or be made available in their physical gallery. After the unveiling of the finished product, prints and digital prints of your furry friend will be available.
How much does dog photography cost?
The expenses for dog portrait photography packages can vary from £45 to over £1,000. The pricing will depend on several factors. This includes:
- The location
- The number of dogs
- The amount of time spent for the shoot (the package you pick)
If you want to avail add-ons such as extra prints, wall art, albums, or gallery framed prints of your furry friend, you need to purchase it separately. Depending on the size and type of option you choose, the price can start from £6 to over £500 per piece.
More often, you will be presented with many beautiful images of your beloved pooch, and it is hard not to purchase them all, so discuss beforehand with your dog photographer the available options.
What to do before and during the dog photoshoot?
It is imperative that your canine buddy looks his absolute best during the photoshoot. Get him fresh and ready and make the most out of the session by following these easy steps:
Before the photoshoot
- Make sure your dog gets enough sleep.
Let your dog have a good night's sleep, so he doesn’t look tired when he wakes up. A day before the photoshoot, avoid disturbing his daily routine as it can affect his sleeping schedule. Keeping him busy in the morning with walks and dog games will help him easily fall in a deep sleep at night.
- Pretty him up.
Consider taking your dog to a professional groomer at least two days before the photoshoot. Let the groomers give him a haircut such as a traditional specific breed trim that would make his features stand out.
If you don’t have time to drop by the groomer, make sure to give him a refreshing bath to remove the dirt and doggie smell.
Do not forget to brush his coat thoroughly as well so that he doesn’t look scruffy on camera. For breeds prone to tear stains, always ready a tear stain remover.
Trimming his nails is essential as well, especially if the photoshoot involves furniture. This will prevent his nails from leaving scratches or damaging them.
- Practice commands.
Dogs are often high in energy but short in attention span. Thus, they’re so quick to get distracted. This is a typical dilemma that happens during dog photography.
Thus, it is always handy to practise obedience commands a few days before the photoshoot. It is important that he learns to follow the basic sit, stay, and wait commands.
During the Photoshoot
- Burn some energy.
A few hours before the scheduled photo shoot, take your dog out for a run. This is very useful, especially if you have an extremely active canine. It lessens his extra energy so that he will be calm when the photoshoot begins.
Keep in mind not to go over the top with your furry friend’s exercise since he still needs to be perky and cheerful whilst posing for the camera.
- Small bites and high rewards.
Give your dog a small meal in the morning. Too much food will lead him to feel full and sluggish. Before you travel, be sure to pack his favourite treats.
Once the photoshoot starts, use it to get his attention whenever he becomes distracted. This works well with food-driven pooches. For those that are not, use their favourite toys instead.
- Early birdie
Try to arrive early for the photography session. If your travel time is quite long, take this time to let your dog pee or eliminate. Then, let him explore and get accustomed to the sights, sounds, and smells of the place.
Once the dog photographer arrives, allow him to meet and get comfortable with his presence.