How to Get the Perfect Snap of Your Pet

Who better to find out how to take the perfect Instagram photo of your pet than some of the most famous dogs on the Internet? We got to be a fly on the wall as Theron Humphrey of @ThisWildIdea conducted a photo taking and editing workshop, courtesy of Adobe, with influencers and senior adoption advocates @EllaBeantheDog, @MuppetsRevenge and @ChloeKardoggian. Here are a few of Theron’s tips on how to take the best photo of your pet, along with the well-shot and edited results of the day (using Adobe Spark, Lightroom and Spark Pages on iPhone and Android phones alike).

1. Invest in the process.
Theron points to having to spend time and energy to get the photos right, whether it’s renting an AirBnb to get the perfect space or moving around the furniture in your own home to compose the perfect image. Take a few test shots and check them out (Theron uses Adobe Lightroom to organize his photos) — if they aren’t what you want them to be, go back and re-try the image as many times and ways as you need to.


2. Get in as much light as possible.
If you’re shooting outside, great. But if you are trying to capture your pet in his or her environment at home, start by opening all the blinds and curtains to get in as much light as possible. The natural light will always look more natural than trying to redirect lights at them, and you’d be surprised how much lifting the shades can make a difference. Don’t forget to check the direction the light is coming in and try facing your dog towards it to get as much detail on them as possible.

3. Resolve the idea first.
It’s one thing to grab a great snap shot of your pet because they happen to be sleeping in that position you love, but it’s something completely different to come up with an idea that you want to pose your pet in. Especially if your pet isn’t the natural model that a dog like Ella Bean is (below), you need to resolve the full idea first before you introduce your dog into the shot. Test shooting the scene without your dog in it first to check the light and colors in the shot.


4. Work in a way your dog is comfortable.
You know your dog best, so pick situations he or she will be comfortable in. She’s afraid of heights? Put her on the floor. She can’t focus with other dogs around? Get her alone. And keep favorite treats handy to help direct focus to you and the camera when you are ready to shoot. Shoot photos in blast mode on your phone or camera to make sure you’re not missing that special moment where your dog finally relaxes into the perfect shot. And Theron emphasizes the need for patience, “It takes a lot of work to create and capture the great moments.”


(Credit:Bryan O’Neil Hughes)


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