Since Grace was released from commercial breeding she has been getting healthy and enjoying the life every dog should know with a wonderful foster family. She's a beautiful black merle Great Dane and she's in need of a family to call her own.
To try and help let people know that Grace is searching for her forever family, we wanted to get some pictures of her that would show not only her gorgeous physical traits, but how beautiful she is on the inside as well.
We took some pictures first in her open backyard and then on the deck and I felt pleased with what we got. Then we moved to the front yard where there was more color and those images won out over the others. The flowers helped show Grace's softer side (since she's such a big girl). Just having the flowers in the frame with her helps to show that this XL dog is meant for family more than a lot of other large breeds who's job is more of that of a guard dog.
If you want images that have a sense of calm to them, bring in some flowers. Not only will they brighten the scene, the color will brighten the viewers day, too. It always does mine. ;O)
Grace is available for adoption through B-Squad Dog Rescue in Brandon, SD.
If you'd like to see what others have blooming in their area, start with Pet Love Photography and continue around the blog circle.
This summer will mark the one year anniversary of the Arc Of Dreams in Sioux Falls, SD. The downtown sculpture created by artist Dale Lamphere, is 70 feet tall and spans the length of a football field across the Big Sioux River. Modeling his art piece on the 6 ft midwest prairie grasses that bend in the wind, there is a space of about 15 feet in the middle where the two pieces almost touch. Through this space in the sculpture, Lamphere creates a reminder that,
...sometimes all it takes to make a dream come true is a "leap of faith."
I've always loved the sculpture walk that is showcased on Philips Ave every year, but I hadn't yet made it to see the Arc. When I decided on a whim to go last week, I was in awe of the enormity of the sculpture. As I walked along the river looking at the Arc from different angles, the only thing I could think was,
I need to get a dog down here for some pictures!!!
But, what kind of dog? Hermes and Dash are not the right look for this statue and their personalities are not quite right for it either.
I knew it would need to be a dog who is use to the downtown lifestyle complete with distractions. As soon as the thought entered my head I knew the dog for the job...
Meet Downtown Henry!
I first met Henry when he was taking dock diving classes at Paws Pet Resort last summer. The first day of class Henry was asking his dog dad why in the world those dogs were going in that pool, and why were they crazy enough to jump!!! By the end of the 4 weeks Henry was a star! After finally making his "leap of faith" off the dock, Henry showed up at the dock with his super cape in tow and the smiles went on for days!
In my mind, Henry was perfect for pictures at the Arc. Besides the fact that he's so darn cute, Henry is a downtown dog who loves his city and all that downtown has to offer a dog (even if he was once told that he was too loud for Josiah's). Through his diving journey, Henry took that leap of faith that the Arc of Dreams was created around (pardon the pun). Dogs will do that you know. There is really nothing that they won't do for the family they love.
I told you Henry was adorable. ;O) By the way, you can follow Downtown Henry on Instagram. Yep, he's got his own account!
If you're in Sioux Falls or plan to visit, make sure you take some time to visit the Arc. It does not disappoint.
Thanks for modeling for me, Henry! Those GQ dogs got nothin on you. ;O)
This was a "free for all" post for our pet photographer's blog circle, so feel free to circle around if you'd like. Start with Linda Perdue of VP Shoots Photography in Tampa, Florida.
Are you a fan of The Office? Say hello to Dwight! According to his humans he has a dry sense of humor if a dog can have one and he's "super chill." Dwight demonstrated that beautifully during his session. He also had three wardrobe changes and he rocked each and every one. :O)
Dwight can not hear, but that doesn't stop him from one of his favorite activities-watching tv. He's not shy and is always excited to meet other people. His mood changes when his humans are both with him, and he loves watching his dog mom work.
As far as hobbies go, Dwight is a leaf and stick collector. When he goes for a walk he always brings home a new stick and has them safely stored in a pile outside. (Take a guess what we used instead of noises to get his attention at the session. wink, wink)
We introduced Dwight to something new during his session...bubbles! And, oh my goodness he went for them with everything he had. (I know what the Easter bunny will be bringing Dwight next year!)
Dwight is not even a year old yet and he's eager to explore and learn everything he can. Enjoy the rest of the Fall season Dwight and I hope Winter is just a fun for you!
These three fur-balls are all heart and they bring so much joy and fun to their humans' lives. Don't be fooled though; what one dog doesn't think of the others will and they are involved in just as many hi-jinx as the next dog family. They are also so very loved.... and they know it. ;O)
During their session, Shiloh, Little & Moose showed off tricks, played with bubbles, ran through the leaves and even struck a pose every once in awhile.
It was obvious that these three love being around their humans, but they are also adventurous and ready for fun. Through it all, Moose was curious yet polite, Shilo was on alert for possible threats to the session (i.e. squirrels and other varmints), and Little never let on for one second that she wasn't in charge and running the show. And, did I mention hi-jinx?!
By the end of the session, we were all worn out. It's just another perk I offer for pet parents. ha!
As we were leaving we noticed a dog who was enjoying the park, but it was obvious that she forgot to bring her owner with her. So, while Brittany and I waited with the pups, Shelby took care to make sure that the dog was in safe hands, posted her on Sioux Falls Lost Pets Facebook page and we all crossed our fingers that her owner would be found. By the next morning I had a text from Shelby telling me that all was well. I soooo love dog people. :O)
What you do for one you need to do for the others. So, since we had so much fun with Tex in the water a couple of weeks ago, we made sure that his siblings got to have a great time, too.
This session was a little extra fun for me to go through the images because it included four very different personalities all in the same place. When trying to get one good family photo, no matter what the others were doing, Blu was ready. (Blu, you're so awesome.) If a duck flew over (and they did - several times), TEX was all business. ha! Lola just loved to smile and dash ahead wherever we were going, and Ray was a typical puppy who explored every inch of his surroundings (and looked cute of course).
There is lots of play time and lots of fun for these four, but when mom says, "look"... all eyes are on her.
We hiked, played with bubbles, watched ducks fly by, explored the "grassy jungle" and some, well, couldn't help themself. (Yes, they are adorable, but look at Tex!)
I always have a great time photographing sessions, and even though it's a bit more work with multiple dogs it's always that much more fun. Thank you for "that much more fun" you guys. :O)
This was a session I was really looking forward to! I love working dogs and have wanted to photograph one "at work" for a long time now. When Sami told me that she wanted to do a session, BUT she wanted me to photograph her dog hunting, I couldn't say yes fast enough.
Tex is a duck hunter so that meant we were going to be in the water. I borrowed some waders (thanks Greg!) and they only leaked on one side! (Thanks, Greg.) It didn't matter because I was having as much fun as Tex was!
Tex did some training while we were out there, too and I learned things like, one- how he learns to follow signals that lead him to where his owner wants him to go, and two, what a dog looks like when he's peeing in the water. ha!
Seriously though, this dog can be the biggest muppet out there, but when he's working he's all business. Look at that determination!
Tex is a hard worker and you can see the pride in him when he knows he's done well. It's quite humbling to watch a dog who is so in tune with his owner both as a friend and as a partner. The hard work put in by both does not go un-noticed, and it is very, very cool to witness.
** No ducks were harmed in the making of this session. ;O)
Faust is a strong, lean German short hair. He is very handsome and confident, quite mellow, and like a lot of dogs showed me that he can also be a little derpy, too. Picture him with his ears back, nose in the air looking at you with a huge grin on his face (and maybe a bit of slobber). What's not to love??!!! What he didn't show me was his age. He's a vibrant nine year old dog who's distinguished white face is the only thing that gives it away.
Faust participates in obedience competition (I swear I didn't even know this was a thing, but how cool!), but his real love is "the hunt" part of hunting. He loves to search out the birds! Actually, I don't think it even has to be a bird. At one point during his session he became very alert and drug his dog mom off across a trail. It was a mouse. I never saw it, but Faust did and he was determined to sniff it out. I feel like if the grass had been mowed that little mouse might not have fared as well.
If his dog mom is around, then you'll find Faust with her. She is his person and they love to spend time together. Besides hunting and competitions they like to hike, run, and dabble in agility. If the weather's bad he'll even hop on the treadmill with mom.
Faust was a sport letting me drag him to different sections of different parks trying to avoid the still flooded areas around town. He really liked the tall grasses best I think. It was the end of the day, but he mustered up plenty of energy to run in and out of them. (I was pooped just watching him at this point. ha!)
In the end he relaxed a bit with mom and we got a couple of very sweet silhouettes. I wish you lots of fun adventures with your dog mom, Faust. She's a very lucky lady.
When I first saw Max all I could think was, wow, what a gorgeous dog! But, it didn't take but a few minutes to see that Max is just as beautiful on the inside as he is on the outside. Max adores his dog mom and dad, and he's quite high on their list of friends to hang out with, too.
Max is not shy when it comes to the camera and he was quite happy to show me how much he loves being outdoors. Running, jumping logs, and fetching were his favorites. But, honestly, I think he would be thrilled doing anything as long as it involves being with his humans.
Max played the whole session, stopping every once in awhile to pose. THAT'S when I saw the oh so handsome modeling side of him. (There might be good money in this one day, Max. Just sayin'.)
Yes, Max is a gorgeous dog, (and honestly, I don't think he has a clue how handsome he is), but you can tell when you're around Max that he knows he's a part of a team, a tribe, a family. It's a great feeling to know you belong, and I don't think there is any doubt that Max feels the love.
Enjoy the rest of the snow season with your family, Max!
Location plays a big part in the planning of the sessions I do. They are chosen specifically for the dog's size, color and personality. When I saw a picture of Willow, I knew the perfect spot for her snow session and couldn't wait for it to happen.
Just like I envisioned the colors were perfect for Willow. The bonus was that her dog mom could not have dressed in more appropriate colors if we had tried.
When I mentioned it to her afterwards she said that her favorite color is green and she wears it all the time. This is exactly what I like for my clients to do. The more natural and comfortable everything is, the better the images. It happens all the time. ;O)
Willow had such a great time at her session. She ran, she played fetch, she even slowed down a bit to have a couple of moments with her mom.
There is really only one rule when doing a pet session with me, and that is to have fun! Willow and her dog mom did just that.
Have I ever mentioned how much I love my job?! ;O)
Hercules - famous for his strength and for his numerous far-ranging adventures.
This boy lives up to his name. He was a big puppy and he turned out to be a very handsome and big dog. And, do you know what you get with a big dog like Hercules? You get a big heart.
Speaking of big, the snow decided to "go big" for our session as well!
When I have a client who wants to do a snow session with their dog we plan things a little differently. Instead of picking a date and planning for it, we plan the session first and then when the weather cooperates we pull on our snow pants and head out.
This particular day was perfect. With temps in the high 20s and very little wind everything was great weather-wise. What we didn't realize was that the snow at our location was deeper than we anticipated. This is where Herc's size was a Greek god-send. ;O)
He ran, jumped and played in the snow, and plowed through so that he could lead his littlest best friend across.
Herc even took a private (well, semi-private) moment with his mom for a picturesque image in front of snow filled trees.
Big dog, big heart and big snow... there was definitely a theme that day... and, it was wonderful.